Visualization tools used to correlate complex toxicity datasets


A team of CEINT researchers, led by CMU senior professor and CEINT deputy director Greg Lowry, has made an impact on the new and growing world of nanoinformatics with a novel analytical tool to help visualize complex toxicity datasets. This research has been published in the journal Environmental Science Nano with an article titled, “Visualization tool for correlating nanomaterial properties and biological responses in zebrafish”.

Outcomes of the visualization tool are based on a collection of zebrafish assays stored in the Nanomaterial-Biological Interactions Knowledgebase, which has been assembled and widely shared by CEINT collaborator Professor Stacey Harper at Oregon State University. Hypotheses can be investigated with this interactive tool to understand how certain nanomaterial properties will affect toxicity. (Join at

This paper is of particular interest because the tool itself was made publicly available on the day the manuscript was published; additionally this work has been featured by Chemistry World, “What’s your nano poison?”.

With a recognition of the interdependent nature of complex research and an associated increase in data sharing requirements of funding agencies, the publication of this tool and manuscript pairing illustrates that a culture of data sharing in support of a “knowledge commons”, minable by researchers beyond those who contributed to the original investigations, is of increasing importance to CEINT and to the research community as a whole.



“Visualization tool for correlating nanomaterial properties and biological responses in zebrafish.” Sandra C. Karcher, Bryan J. Harper, Stacey L. Harper, Christine Ogilvie Hendren, Mark R. Wiesner and Gregory V. Lowry. Environ. Sci.: Nano, 2016, Advance Article DOI: 10.1039/C6EN00273K