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Last modified: Monday, January 30, 2012

Persistent Systems provides two IU tech Ph.D. students with $50,000 gifts to forward research

Jan. 30, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Two doctoral candidates at Indiana University Bloomington's School of Informatics and Computing will share equally in a $100,000 gift from international software company Persistent Systems to support research in cloud computing and bioinformatics.

Persistent Winners

IU School of Informatics and Computing doctoral students Anoop Mayampurath, left, and Thilina Gunarathne will each receive $50,000 from Persistent Systems to further their research.

Print-Quality Photo

Thilina Gunarathne, a fourth-year computer science student working with distinguished professor Geoffrey Fox, and Anoop Mayampurath, a fourth-year informatics student working with associate professor Haixu Tang, will each receive $50,000. The gift extends Persistent Systems' investment in the Persistent Indiana Research Center Research and Development incubator in Bloomington that was established in collaboration with the School of Informatics and Computing in 2009.

Gunarathne's work will focus on novel programming environments for scientific applications on cloud, including work to develop one of the first true parallel programming systems for the Microsoft commercial cloud Azure. Clouds have burst on the computing scene over the past three years, but mainly for commercial applications. The role of clouds in supporting science is an important research issue that will be clarified by Gunarathne's research.

Mayampurath will work on the development of software systems for the identification and quantification of glycopeptides from mass spectrometry data. Glycosylation is a common protein modification that links a glycan (sugar) molecule to one or more amino acid residues in proteins. The alteration of protein glycosylations has been observed in diseases, including cancer, and as a result, glycopeptides analysis using mass spectrometry is perceived to be a useful tool for biomarker discovery and disease prognosis.

Efforts to improve analysis have been hindered by the lack of software tools for automatic data analysis, and Mayampurath is seeking to develop the first software system of its kind to fulfill those broad needs.

"We are delighted to deepen our relationship with Persistent Systems and leverage the company's vast experience and expertise in informatics and life sciences," said SOIC Dean Bobby Schnabel. "Working with a global leader like Persistent Systems helps us to combine our research with important applications."

IU alumnus and SOIC Deans Advisory Council member Anand Deshpande, chairman, managing director and CEO of Persistent Systems, said that by teaming with Indiana University, Persistent would help to foster new ideas and technology innovations.

"Indiana University continues to be a pioneer and at the forefront of U.S. Informatics research," Deshpande said. "At Persistent Systems we are continuously tracking new technology trends and aligning our areas of expertise with these market developments. Cloud computing, mass spectrometry and NGS are considered disruptive technologies, and the research can make significant impact in health care, life sciences and other domains."

About Persistent Systems

Established in 1990, Persistent Systems is a global company specializing in software product development services. For more than two decades, Persistent has been an innovation partner for the world's largest technology brands, leading enterprises and pioneering start-ups. With a global team of 6,600 employees, Persistent has 300 customers spread across North America, Europe and Asia.

Persistent focuses on developing best-in-class solutions in four key next-generation technology areas: cloud computing; mobility; business intelligence and analytics; and collaboration across technology, telecommunications, life sciences, consumer packaged goods, banking and financial services, and health care verticals. Persistent Systems can be found listed at India's National Stock Exchange and the Bombay Stock Exchange as PERSISTENT. For more information, please visit

About the Indiana University School of Informatics

Founded in 2000 as the first school of its kind in the United States, the Indiana University School of Informatics is dedicated to research and teaching across a broad range of computing and information technology, with emphases on science, applications and societal implications. The school includes the Departments of Computer Science and Informatics on the Bloomington campus and Informatics on the IUPUI campus.

The school administers a variety of bachelor's and master's degree programs in computer science and informatics, as well as Ph.D. programs in computer science and the first-ever Ph.D. in informatics. The school is dedicated to excellence in education and research, to partnerships that bolster economic development and entrepreneurship, and to increasing opportunities for women and underrepresented minorities in computing and technology. For more information, visit

For more information please contact Steve Chaplin, IU Communications, at 812-856-1896 or Tweeting IU science: @IndianaScience