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Horizon Europe Grant for Can Alkan

Assoc. Prof. Can Alkan of the Department of Computer Engineering has received a Horizon Europe grant for a project that has the potential to speed up genome sequence analysis.

This is the first project grant to go to a Bilkent researcher under the EU’s Horizon Europe funding program for research and innovation, successor to the Horizon 2020 program. The project was approved for funding through the European Innovation Council’s Pathfinder program, which offers support to research teams “to research or develop an emerging breakthrough technology.”

Dr. Alkan is leading an international consortium as coordinator of the BioPIM (processing-in-memory architectures and programming libraries for bioinformatics algorithms) project. Together with partners from Switzerland, France and Israel, he will focus on co-designing algorithms and data structures commonly used in bioinformatics together with emerging processing-in-memory hardware technologies to obtain the highest benefit in cost, energy and time savings in genome sequence analysis.

The project aims to impact all forms of genome and transcriptome studies, including: disease-causing mutation discovery (including mutations leading to cancer); metagenomics; population genetics and comparative genomics; transcriptome profiling; and outbreak detection and tracking of diseases such as COVID-19, Ebola and Zika.