An interview with Arran
What attracted you to medicine, IT and now health informatics?
“I have had an interest in IT for as long as I can remember; I enjoy creative endeavours but not necessarily artistically creative ones so programming has always provided a sense of pride in having produced something of measurable value. I’m easily frustrated by having to perform repetitive, mundane tasks so would rather spend that time (or longer if need be) developing a solution for automation instead.
Medicine was more serendipitous, significant facial trauma and excellent care inspired me to undertake a different academic challenge. Having an undergraduate degree heavily focused on statistics, the natural progression was to combine the three domains. I was fortunate enough to have completed a project under A/Prof Rory Clifton-Bligh who introduced me to bioinformatics and has since become my mentor and supervisor (I probably owe him more thanks than last year’s Christmas present). Two years later and we have completed a project, CompressGV, that uses the data compression algorithm underlying PNG images and gzip to quantify evolutionary diversity and make probabilistic predictions of SNP effects (manuscript under review). I enjoy the challenge of finding interesting logical links, especially unexpected ones like this.
What career plans do you have?
Tough question. The obvious path, and one that I’m seriously considering, is specialist training as a genetic pathologist. That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed my anaesthetic rotation in med school; my brain seems to mesh well with their way of thinking and I like problem-solving under high pressure.
Either way I think I’ll need something entrepreneurial on the side. I’ve recently started a new business focused on easing the burden of performing clinical research; there’s a bit more to it but I’ll save that for the HISA App Challenge.
What mark do you want to leave on the world?
Tougher question. As long as my work has some purpose beyond generating cash I’m not particularly fussed; my goal isn’t to be the richest man in the cemetery.
Arran Schlosberg MBBS
BCom (Actuarial Studies)
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