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Statistics and statisticians play a fundamental role in research in medicine, public health and the biological sciences. Biostatistics is the branch of statistics devoted to the collection and interpretation of data in these areas.

Biostatisticians collaborate with domain science experts to design clinical trials, observational studies and laboratory experiments to ensure that the resulting data are appropriate to address the scientific objectives. They also carry out analyses to translate data from these and other sources, such as electronic health records or large public health data sets, into knowledge while accounting for potential biases, missing information and other complications.

New statistical methods are continually required to confront the challenges presented by advances in technology, the increasing complexity and volume of data, and emerging areas of inquiry. Biostatistical research involves development and evaluation of methodology for these problems through integration of statistical theory with understanding of the biological, medical or public health context.