Computational Neuro-genetic Modelling for Diagnosis and Prognosis in Mental Health

Mental health disorders can be extremely debilitating, requiring lifelong treatments. Numerous studies have clearly shown that timely and early intervention has the potential to improve therapeutic outcomes. In the largest single site study of its kind, this project aims to better understand and predict disease progression using a combination of data science (DS) and artificial intelligence (AI) techniques. This study also boasts an unprecedented level of data varieties, including clinical, behavioural and large-scale molecular data from cutting edge genomics, proteomics and metabonomic technologies.

Findings from this project will improve our understanding of mental health conditions in at-risk youths and provide mental health services in both Aotearoa New Zealand (NZ) and Singapore better tools to identify and manage the severity and impact of disease progression. Additionally, it demonstrates the potential of DS/AI practices in medical research and healthcare.

This project is jointly coordinated via NTU’s School of Biological Sciences and their partner from School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences at Auckland University of Technology (AUT) through the Catalyst: Strategic – New Zealand-Singapore Data Science Research Programme (supported by the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, NZ and the Singapore Data Science Consortium, Singapore).

The researchers from both sides will work together towards the following objectives:

  1. Development of new machine-learning/AI methods for multimodal data modelling.
  2. Solving an important problem in mental health, such as early identification and prognosis of at-risk youths for more personalised interventions.
  3. A better understanding of individual factors that are associated with the development of mental disorders.

The proposed research scope aligns with priority areas in both health technology and also applied DS/AI for both Singapore and NZ.

Singapore Host Institution: Nanyang Technological University (NTU)
New Zealand Host Institution: Auckland University of Technology (AUT)
Principal Investigators: Dr. Wilson Wen Bin Goh, Assistant Chair and Director (Biomedical Data Science Graduate Programme), School of Biological Sciences, College of Science, NTU and Dr. Maryam Doborjeh, Neuroinformatics Lecturer, ITSE Department, AUT
Co-Investigators: Dr. Jimmy Lee, Associate Professor, Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, NTU and Senior Consultant, Institute of Mental Health, Singapore, Professor Limsoon Wong, Department of Computer Science, National University of Singapore, Professor Nikola Kasabov (Science Leader), AUT, Dr. Zohreh Doborjeh, The University of Auckland, Dr. Margaret Hinepo Williams, AUT, Professor Edmund Lai, HoD of ITSE Department, AUT
Collaborators: Assistant Professor Guo Tiannan, Westlake University, Assistant Professor Foo Jia Nee, Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, NTU, Professor Wang Yulan, Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, NTU