Uma Chandran

Research Associate Professor
Work Phone: 412-648-9326
Photo of Uma Chandran


Research Associate Professor, Biomedical Informatics
Secondary appointment: Research Associate Professor, Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute
Director, Genomics Analysis Services
Co-Director, Cancer Bioinformatics Services, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center

Dr. Chandran’s Summary of Research
Cancer Bioinformatics Services
Health Sciences Core Research Facilities
Center for Research Computing course website
Google Scholar Page

I direct the Genomics Analysis Core, a Health Science shared resource and co-direct the Cancer Bioinformatics Services (CBS) for the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center.  The GAC and CBS’s aims are to 1) provide genomics data analysis, 2) support team science projects such as consortia projects with computational infrastructure for analysis, storage and sharing of large genomics datasets, 3) assist with University of Pittsburgh initiatives for genomics education.  GAC and CBS are an interdisciplinary collaboration between my team, the Department of Biomedical Informatics faculty with bioinformatics expertise, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center, the Institute for Personalized Medicine, the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC) and the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Research Computing (CRC). My team and I have experience working with all genomic platforms and applications RNA Seq, Whole Exome Seq (WXS) and Whole Genome Seq (WGS), single cell seq and digital spatial profiling (DSP). We support both cancer and non-cancer studies and from cell culture, model organisms and human datasets such as The Cancer Genome Atlas Project (TCGA).

My team’s contributes to team science projects by providing expertise in data analysis, metadata annotation, FAIR principles of data sharing and high performance computing.  Examples of such projects include the Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s multi-institution AURORA metastatic breast cancer project in which CBS and PSC collaborate in hosting the  data coordination center (DCC). My group also plays a key role in the Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s Data Hub for all 250 BCRF sites.

In the area of genomics education, I teach bioinformatics lectures for DBMI’s Intro to Biomedical Informatics course. My team and I also work closely with the CRC’s genomics education initiative funded by a Pitt seed grant. We have taught hands-on workshops in RNA Seq, metagenomics, single cell genomics and next flow (nf-core) pipelines. The courses are archived and are available through the CRC course website.


Research Interests:

  1. Genomic data analysis including RNA Seq, WES, WGS, single cell Seq, digital spatial profiling (DSP) and emerging platforms.
  2. Support for team science projects which require broad genomics expertise in analysis, metadata annotation, FAIR principles in data sharing and computing infrastructure.
  3. Genomics education
Academic Appointments:
12/2015 – present
Research Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Informatics, University of Pittsburgh12/2015 – present
Co-director, Cancer Bioinformatics Services, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh
Director, Genomics Analysis Core (GAC), University of Pittsburgh6/22 – Present, CTSIGrants & Contracts:
NCI 5P30 CA047904-33
PI: Robert Ferris
Role: co-I
09/1997 – 07/2025
Cancer Center Support Grant1R01 CA251784-01
PI: Yi Huang
Role: Co-I
01/2021 – 02/2026
Role of LSD1 in Triple Negative Breast Cancer Development and Therapeutic ResponseBreast Cancer Research Foundation
PI: Jonathan Silverstein
Role: Key Personnel
01/2022 – 12/2023
BCRF Data Coordination CenterNIDDK 1 R01 DK134580-01
PI: Zhou Wang
Role: co-I
09/2021 – 09/30/2024
Role of E-Cadherin Down-Regulation in Prostatic Inflammation and Lower Urinary Tract
DysfunctionBreast Cancer Research Foundation
PI: Adrian Lee
Role: Key Personnel
Data Coordination CenterTeaching Activities:
2013 – present  Intro to Bioinformatics
Hands-on NGS workshops at the CRC

Service Activities:
present Training Program Member, Training Program Committee
Admission Committee
Strategic Planning Committee

Journal Reviewer
Present AMIA conference on Translational Bioinformatics
Present British Journal of Medicine and Medical Research
Present British Journal of Medical Genomics
Present BMC Cancer
Present Clinical Cancer Research
Present Journal of Immunotherapy of Cancer


Admin Support:

University of Pittsburgh
Department of Biomedical Informatics
5607 Baum Blvd, Suite 500
Pittsburgh, PA 15206-3701