The Center for Bioinformatics announces the arrival of a new faculty member, J. Christian J. Ray, with a joint appointment in the Department of Molecular Biosciences at the rank of assistant professor. Christian uses a combination of theoretical, computational, and experimental approaches to understand the principles of how network interactions in living cells guide, and are guided by, evolution. Of particular interest to him is how critical points emerging from molecular interactions and other physical processes in cells affect fitness and evolution.
Christian received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 2008 in Microbiology and Immunology for immune signalling studies using mathematical and computational models with Denise Kirschner. For postdoctoral work, he moved to the Department of Bioengineering at Rice University to work with Oleg Igoshin. There he applied theoretical and bioinformatic approaches to characterize principles of regulatory network architecture and dynamics. Seeking to develop a theory-driven experimental approach to science, Christian then did postdoctoral work with Gábor Balázsi in the Department of Systems Biology at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, exploring the effects of single-cell dynamics on evolutionary fitness in natural and synthetic regulatory networks.