Louise Pape
425 Henry Mall Rm 3445
Madison, WI 53706
Phone: 608-265-7935
Fax: 608-265-9485


Karen Nafzger
425 Henry Mall Rm 3420
Madison, WI 53706
Phone: 608-262-4366
Fax: 608-265-9485


The Computation and Informatics in Biology and Medicine (CIBM) mission is to provide modern training for a new generation of researchers wishing to solve biomedical problems requiring strengths in both computational and biological sciences in health and disease research. The focus of the CIBM Program encompasses translational bioinformatics, clinical research informatics, and health / clinical informatics. PhD students who are eligible for this interdisciplinary training include those in Chemistry, Computer Sciences, Statistics,Genetics, Nursing, Biochemistry, Engineering, Mathematics, and other computational areas and biological science disciplines from five colleges across campus.


The University of Wisconsin-Madison is proud to sponsor an interdisciplinary predoctoral and postdoctoral bioinformatics training program, funded by a grant from the National Library of Medicine (Grant number 5T15LM007359), with additional support from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Graduate School.

By participating in the CIBM Training Program, computer scientists, statisticians, and engineers receive cross-disciplinary training in biological sciences. Similarly, biologists receive cross-disciplinary training in statistics, engineering, and computational areas related to biomedical research problems.

The Computation and Informatics in Biology and Medicine (CIBM) Training Program at UW-Madison is producing the next generation of computer researchers addressing biomedical problems. This training program is one of just 14 institutional training programs funded by NLM in biomedical informatics in the US. The 54 CIBM faculty span 14 different departments and five colleges at UW-Madison and include several faculty at the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation (located about 100 miles north of Madison).

The interplay between computational and statistical methods and the biomedical sciences continues to expand rapidly. Both computer modeling and informatics now play a key role in both biology and medicine, and our researchers have been developing novel, state-of-the-art algorithms for the analysis of molecular and clinical research data. Increasingly, questions in the biomedical sciences are being phrased for these more quantitative approaches, and computational scientists are developing new approaches in attempting to address biomedical problems. Furthermore, the power of new hardware, algorithms, and software is transforming our thinking about complex systems research. These advances are only possible when computational scientists understand enough about the problems to design high-impact tools and when the clinical and biomedical scientists understand what is possible using computational technologies. The organizations involved in CIBM are strong. UW has a total externally funded research portfolio of $1B/year and is a leading research university. A good fraction of this research is in the biomedical sciences and related areas.

The CIBM Training Program has a unique translational medicine component. Now in its third five-year period, CIBM is extending its prior collaboration with the Marshfield Clinical Research Foundation to also fully integrate the program with UW’s Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (ICTR). A strong training program and the environment at the University of Wisconsin in biology and computational sciences provides a rich setting for research training.

Biomedical informatics studies the collection, organization and application of information in health care and medical research. There are many different sub-fields within the broader field of biomedical informatics. These sub-fields use similar techniques and tools but apply them to different problem areas. Bioinformatics focuses on molecules, cells and the interactions between them. This includes studies of genomics, gene-gene interactions, gene-protein interactions, and regulatory networks. Imaging Informatics (also called structural or systems informatics) focuses at the level of organs and organ systems.

Clinical Informatics focuses at the level of the individual. Work in Clinical Informatics includes the development of Electronic Medical Records (EMR), Decision Support Systems (DSS), standardized vocabularies for storing medical information, as well as standards for interoperability between different clinical systems. Public Health Informatics focuses at the level of populations. This includes computerized disease surveillance systems, vaccine registries, systems for disaster management and tools to educate patients.

Translational Informatics is a newer sub-field that focuses on moving new discoveries from the laboratory into routine clinical care faster. Systems to improve clinical research are included in Translational Informatics.


Support for 9 predoctoral and 6 postdoctoral trainees is provided by a grant from The National Library of Medicine. In addition, support for 3 postdoctoral trainees in dental informatics is funded by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). Predoctoral traineeships are generally awarded for a three-year period and postdoctoral traineeships are generally awarded for a two-year period. These traineeships cover tuition and fees, as well as provide a monthly stipend for living expenses.

For NLM support, predoctoral students must be accepted into an affiliated PhD program. All supported trainees must be permanent residents or U.S. citizens. Information about individual graduate programs can be obtained from the relevant biological and computational departments or from the CIBM Training Program by contacting Louise Pape, Program Coordinator.


The University of Wisconsin-Madison and Marshfield Clinic will be recruiting predoctoral and postdoctoral trainees for the CIBM Training Program. Details on upcoming nominations will be included on this site.