MONTREAL, Oct. 21, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Plotly, developer of the leading data science platform for creating analytic applications, today announced a partnership with McGill University to fund three Ph.D. interns in collaboration with Mitacs, a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada. The doctoral students will work with Sahir Rai Bhatnagar, Assistant Professor of Biostatistics, to create a predictive genetics application to better understand the genetic determinants of temporomandibular disorder (TMD). The tool will be based on a machine learning-driven analysis of the largest available dataset on TMD, which causes pain in the jaw.

Plotly and Mitacs are working together to provide financial support for the interns, and Plotly is contributing support for use of the company’s powerful Dash software, an open source platform for building analytic web applications. Dr. Bhatnagar’s team will use Dash to interactively analyze the large dataset and visualize results from the machine learning model. These visualizations will provide key insight into which genetic components are driving the predictions. The team will create analytical applications in the R programming language for use by researchers studying pain and working to identify drug targets in order to develop more effective treatments.

This partnership expands an ongoing collaboration between Plotly and Mitacs. Last year, Plotly sponsored three bioinformatics interns at the Université de Sherbrooke as they developed a visualization tool for the university’s CoBIUS Lab. The model enabled researchers to view DNA or complex molecules in 3D.

“Plotly is delighted to work Mitacs to partner with McGill in support of technical talent in Québec,” said Jack Parmer, CEO of Plotly. “It’s important to us to give back to the communities we’re a part of, from open source data science to Canadian research teams. By contributing funding and use of our technology to these three promising biostatistics researchers, we hope to benefit not only the students, but patients across Québec.”

Dr. Bhatnagar commented: “Funding from Plotly and Mitacs will help us bring our work out of the lab and to Canada’s healthcare community. Dash will help our team visualize a trove of data and may give us, as well as the researchers at the Québec Pain Research Network, more insight than ever before on temporomandibular disorder.”

“For 20 years, Mitacs has helped develop partnerships between Canadian industry and post-secondary institutions, and we’re happy to continue that work by joining with Plotly and biostatistics researchers at McGill University,” said Eric Bosco, Chief Business Development Officer at Mitacs. “Recognizing the data analysis capabilities of Plotly and biostatistics expertise of Dr. Bhatnagar’s team, we see this as a perfect match for both organizations to elevate their work and to help understand chronic pain alongside the Québec Pain Research Network.”

About Mitacs
Mitacs is a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada for business and academia. Working with 70 universities, thousands of companies, and both federal and provincial governments, Mitacs builds partnerships that support industrial and social innovation in Canada. Open to all disciplines and all industry sectors, projects can span a wide range of areas, including manufacturing, business processes, IT, social sciences, design, and more. Mitacs is funded by the Government of Canada and the Government of Quebec, along with every other province, industry and not-for-profit partners, and academic partners.

About Plotly
Founded in 2013, Plotly is a data visualization company focused on taking data science out of the lab and into the business. Plotly makes it easy to create, deploy, and share interactive web apps, graphs, and visualizations in any programming language. Plotly's libraries are used by millions worldwide and embedded into mission critical applications across the Fortune 500.

Danielle Toboni