Peter J. Tonellato, PhD, is a Professor of Bioinformatics, at the University of Missouri School of Medicine. He applies mathematic, statistic and bioinformatic approaches and methods using the scientific method to create platforms to translate, validate and predict the value of actionable health care data and information — particularly genetic data, information and knowledge — in “best practice” precision medicine. Dr. Tonellato’s work includes the use of “clinical avatars,” digital representations of patients, in the modeling, simulation and prediction of genetic data’s impact on individual and characteristic patient outcome metrics. At present, Dr. Tonellato is conducting a collection of AI-based experiments to pursue new avenues using large language models (LLMs), generative AI and related emerging methodology, technology and resources in pursuit of translational biomedical science.

Dr. Tonellato’s past positions include joint appointments with Harvard Medical School (Director, Laboratory for Personalized Medicine) in the Department of Biomedical Informatics and Professor of Bioinformatics at the Zilber School of Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee . He was founding director of three research centers: At Marquette University (Laboratory for Bioinformatics); the Medical College of Wisconsin (The Bioinformatics Research Center) and at the University of Missouri (Center for Biomedical and Informatics Research) and was the first faculty member recruited for the Center for Biomedical Informatics at Harvard Medical School. Previous work includes the creation of the Rat Genome Database (, the first disease-centric repository of phenotype and genetic data, and the Program in Genomic Applications ( a model organism of human disease phenotype-genotype platform designed to aid the animal model research community to create hypotheses through data mining a massive heterogeneous collection of phenotypes, genetic and microarray expression data from the largest collection of rat and other model organism specialty bred species.

Academic Information



CE707 CS&E Bldg
Columbia, MO 65212
United States

P. 573-882-8418

Research Interests

  • Biomedical Informatics
  • Mathematical Modeling
  • Simulations

Education & Training

Post-Graduate School

1980, MS, Applied Mathematics, University of Arizona; 1982, University of Oxford, Oxford, England: 1982, Hiroshima University, Hiroshima, Japan; and 1985, PhD, Applied Mathematics, University of Arizona

Awards & Honors

  • 2011 Appointed Member, Dana Farber-Harvard Medical School Cancer Center Faculty (Program Affiliations: Breast Cancer and Computational Biology), Boston, MA
  • 1982 Sigma Xi, Pre-Doctoral Research, University of Oxford
  • 1982 State of Arizona, Summer Graduate Fellowship, University of Oxford

Professional Societies

  • 2016- American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • 2010- American Society of Public Health
  • 2007- American Medical Informatics Association
  • 2002-2004 American Society for Human Genetics
  • 2001-2004 American Statistical Association
  • 1999-2003 American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • 1999-2003 International Society for Computational Biology
  • 1999-2004 American Physiological Society
  • 1999-2003 Association for Computing Machinery
  • 1992-2004 Biomedical Engineering Society
  • 1989-2006 Microcirculatory Society
  • 1986-2004 Society for Mathematical Biology
  • 1985-1998 Sigma Xi
  • 1982-1995 European Geophysical Society
  • 1979-2004 American Mathematical Society
  • 1979-2004 Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics


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