University of Thessaly - Department of Computer Science and Biomedical Informatics

The Department of Computer Science and Biomedical Informatics of the University of Thessaly has operated since the academic year 2004-2005.

Short description of the Organisation
Main role and contribution to the Project
Previous experience relevant to the Project
Key People Involved in the Project


 

Short description of the Organisation

The Department of Computer Science and Biomedical Informatics of the University of Thessaly is a leading Department in the scientific field of Applied Sciences, as it comes to cover the existing gap in the area of specialization in applications of Informatics in Medicine, Health and Biology. It promotes the basic knowledge of Informatics, which, over the years, has been established as an autonomous scientific area. In addition, through the last semesters, the students are able to obtain specialization, which contains the evaluation of the Information systems emphasizing in the fields of the Medical Technology, the Medical Information Systems, the Administrative Services and the research in Bioinformatics.

The technical infrastructure of the departments is consisted of 5 computing laboratories, sufficiently equipped with personal computers and networks, which can provide advanced services of Telematics and support the educational needs of the students. In the Dept, the Network Operations Center – NOC (http://noc.ucg.gr/) has been established in 2005. NOC ensures an uninterrupted and high speed interfacing of the departments’ users with the local network, as well as, with the Greek and international voice and data networks. NOC works for the continuous enhancement and modernization of its infrastructure, the acquisition of new know-how and the fast incorporation of ongoing technology in its infrastructure.

The newly established Biomedical data Processing and Telemedicine Research Group, within the Department of Computer Science and Biomedical is very active in the areas of artificial intelligence, computer visions, mobile communications, e-health and pervasive applications. The group consists of two faculty member with Ph.D. in the area of biomedical engineering and artificial intelligence, who supervise postgraduate research work of seven highly qualified graduate engineers. The group is entirely devoted to research activities and its members are highly qualified in their corresponding research fields. The group members have extensive theoretical and computational experience in the fields of Image and Multimedia Data Processing Computer Vision Biomedical Informatics, Telemedicine and Multimedia Communications, e-health and e-learning applications, multimedia and mobile and pervasive computing.

 

Main role and contribution to the Project

Contributions as workpackage member in work packages 1-9

 

 

Previous experience relevant to the Project

The group has great expertise in processing of medical image and video data (i.e. data segmentation and annotation, coding, pattern recognition and image reconstruction) and biosignal processing (pattern recognition, coding and patient status interpretation). A number of methodologies and tools have been developed by the group that allow proper coding of medical data (e.g., Region of Interest coding in medical images and videos using advanced progressing wavelets compression and H.264-based techniques), image segmentation and classification techniques (e.g., microscopy images segmentation and quantification and skin melanoma detection and classification). Apart from the aforementioned tools, the group has established a repository of medical data consisting mainly of medical images of various modalities. 

The group has also significant research work in Telemedicine and Context Aware Systems. In rapidly changing scenarios, such as the ones considered in the fields of mobile, pervasive, or ubiquitous computing, systems have to adapt their behavior based on the current conditions and the dynamicity of the environment they are immerse in. A system is context-aware if it can extract, interpret and use context information and adapt its functionality to the current context of use. The challenge for such systems lies in the complexity of capturing, representing and processing contextual data. The group has developed mechanisms and methodologies for context status modelling interpretation (utilizing ontologies and rule engines) and medical content proper adaptation. Great expertise has also been gained in patient status awareness using body sensor networks and advanced pattern recognition techniques that are specifically used for detecting patient body falls and related distress situations.

Specific applications for Teledermatology, Teleradiology and Collaborative Platforms for the provision of physician’s distant interaction and 2nd opinion have been developed. The current research is focused on Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) technologies aim at enabling independence of chronic patients and elder people with the support of advanced technologies.  In AAL, accessibility, usability and learning play a major role in the emerging digital cities area to enable citizens with specific demands, e.g. handicapped, chronic patients or elderly, to live in congenial environments longer. Ambient home care systems (AHCS) are specially designed for this purpose; they aim at minimizing the potential risks that living alone may suppose for an elder, relying on their capability of gathering user related data, inferring information about their activity and state, and taking decisions on the user potential demands.

In addition the group has participated in the development of a Grid based platform capable of statistical processing of large-scale biological data, e.g., DNA microarray experiment data (www.grissom.gr). The latter experiments are becoming a standard technique in order to examine patterns of gene expression. As this technology matures and the cost drops significantly, the amount of experimental data produced by laboratories around the world constantly increases, leading to the problem of finding computational and storage resources. The group has developed methodologies and tools for performing statistical filtering of genes expressions, gene annotation and clustering. The parallelization of the latter tools has allowed faster and more efficient execution of DNA microarray data statistical filtering.

 

Key People Involved in the Project

Dr. Vassilis P. Plagianakos received the Bachelor's and Ph.D. degrees in Mathematics from the University of Patras, Greece, in 1996 and 2003, respectively. From 1996 to 2006, he has been a Research Assistant with the Computational Intelligence Lab, Department of Mathematics, University of Patras and participated in several research projects funded by public and private organizations. He has been a visiting Lecturer at the Department of Information and Communication Systems Engineering, University of the Aegean, Greece (2003); visiting Lecturer at the Department of Materials Science, University of Patras, Greece (2004); visiting Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science and Biomedical Informatics, University of Central Greece, Greece (2005-2007); Postdoctorate Fellow in the Department of Mathematics, University of Patras (2004-2006). He is currently an Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science and Biomedical Informatics, University of Central Greece, Greece (2008-). His research interests are in the areas of neural networks and machine learning, applications in pattern recognition, intelligent decision making, evolutionary and genetic algorithms, parallel and distributed computations, bioinformatics, clustering, intelligent optimization, and real-world problem solving. He is coauthor of 26 journal publications and more than 60 conference papers, and his published work has received more than 300 citations. Dr. Plagianakos is a Member of the Board of the Hellenic Artificial Intelligence Society (2010-2014), the IEEE Neural Networks Society, and the IEEE Bioinformatics and Bioengineering Technical Committee (BBTC).

Dr. Ilias G. MAGLOGIANNIS received a Diploma in Electrical & Computer Engineering and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering and Medical Informatics from the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) Greece in 1996 and 2000 respectively, with scholarship from the Greek Government. From 1996 until 2000 he worked as a Researcher in the Biomedical Engineering Laboratory in NTUA (www.biomed.ntua.gr). From February of 2001 until June 2007 he was with the Dept of Information and Communication Systems Engineering in University of the Aegean (www.icsd.aegean.gr), from 2007 until 2013 he was Assistant Professor in the Dept of Computer Science and Biomedical Informatics in the University of Central Greece and in 2013 he joined the Dept of Digital Systems in the University of Piraeus. He has been principal investigator in many European (i.e. FP7: e-LICO, INHOME, FP6: UNITE, NOMAD, TELEMED, FP5: MOMEDA, INTRACLINIC) and National Research programs in Biomedical Engineering and Informatics, while he has also served as external evaluator in R&D projects for the EU, the Government of Hong Kong, the Republic of Czech, Cyprus and Greece. His scientific interests include Telemedicine, Medical Image processing and Computer Vision, Multimedia and Video processing, Mobile and Pervasive Healthcare Systems, Ambient Assisted Living.  His published scientific work includes three (3) books (Springer, IOS press and Morgan Claypool Publishers) and five (5) lecture notes (in Greek) on Biomedical Engineering and Multimedia topics, 70 journal papers and more than 150 international conference papers. Dr. Maglogiannis has received more than 1000 citations on his published work. He also serves as Associate Editor for the IEEE Journal on Biomedical Health Informatics Journal and editorial board member of Personal and Ubiquitous Computing Journal published by Springer and the Journal on Information Technology in Healthcare and Intelligent Decision Technologies published by IOS Press. Dr. Maglogiannis is a Senior member of IEEE - Societies: Engineering in Medicine and Biology, Computer, Communications, SPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering, ACM, the Technical Chamber of Greece, the Greek Computer Society, the Hellenic Organization of Biomedical Engineering and the Hellenic Society of Bioinformatics. Dr. Maglogiannis is also a national representative for Greece in the IFIP technical committee TC 12 (Artificial Intelligence – Knowledge-Oriented Development of Applications), Secretary of Working Group WG12.5 (AI Applications) and member of the Working Group on Leading-edge Applications of the eMobility technology platform. Dr Maglogiannis was Chair of the AIAI06, 3rd International Conference on Artificial Intelligence Application and Innovations and Program Committee Chair and member of the Founding and Steering Committee of the PETRA conference (ACM International Conference on Pervasive Technologies Related to Assistive Environments) series. Dr. Maglogiannis serves also as affiliated faculty in the Computer Science Dept University of Texas at Arligton USA.

 

Contact Person: 
Vassilios Plagianakos