Blog

  • Risk or resilience: the genetics of PTSD

    Paul Goldsmith, September 22nd, 2016

    Hysteria, nostalgia, homesickness, railroad spine, shell shock, battle fatigue—posttraumatic stress disorder has been with us for as long as recorded history. Today, PTSD is one of our most common psychiatric disorders—affecting an estimated 24 million adults in the U.S. alone. And yet, despite its prevalence, little is known about the biological roots of this debilitating condition.

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  • Broad Institute joins White House Precision Medicine Summit with researchers, initiatives to drive health research forward

    Paul Goldsmith, February 25th, 2016

    On Thursday, February 25th, President Obama hosted a panel discussion as part of the White House Precision Medicine Initiative Summit, which included discussions of three Broad initiatives and research projects. The summit highlighted progress made as part of the President’s Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI).

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  • Pardis Sabeti: How we'll fight the virus next time

    Paul Goldsmith, February 4th, 2016

    When Ebola Zaire swept across West Africa in early 2014, a research team led by Broad Institute member Pardis Sabeti worked with collaborators from Sierra Leone and around the world to collect samples, rapidly sequence genomes, and share data in order to accelerate the outbreak response effort.

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  • Calculated risk

    Paul Goldsmith, January 20th, 2016

    Prion disease is the common name for a family of rare, progressive neurodegenerative disorders that can be caused by mutations in the prion protein gene (PRNP). These mutations produce misshapen proteins, which accumulate, destroying neurons and leaving the brain with sponge-like holes resulting in dementia, and ultimately death. More than 60 genetic mutations have been associated with prion disease—and until now, many physicians have assumed that all of these variants confer an identical, 100% likelihood of developing the associated prion disease.

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  • CRISPR in the news

    Paul Goldsmith, November 13th, 2015

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  • Zhang lab unlocks crystal structure of new CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing tool

    Paul Goldsmith, August 27th, 2015

    In a paper published today in Cell researchers from the Broad Institute and University of Tokyo revealed the crystal structure of the Staphylococcus aureus Cas9 complex (SaCas9)—a highly efficient enzyme that overcomes one of the primary challenges to in vivo mammalian genome editing.

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  • Five Questions with Jay Bradner

    Paul Goldsmith, May 29th, 2015

    As associate director of the Broad’s Center for the Science of Therapeutics (CSofT), award-winning hematologist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and a recognized pioneer in open-source drug discovery (not that he would admit to it), Jay Bradner is something of a rock star in the field of chemical biology.

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  • Fanning the flames of lupus

    Paul Goldsmith, April 23rd, 2015

    What: A team of researchers from the Massachusetts General Hospital, Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, and the University of North Carolina has identified an inflammatory molecule that may play an essential role in the development of lupus—a chronic, painful autoimmune disease affecting more than 1.5 million Americans.

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  • Learning from Ebola

    Paul Goldsmith, March 9th, 2015

    In the fall of 2014, Ebola Zaire did for viral hemorrhagic fever what Jaws did for sharks in the summer of ‘75. The first Ebola diagnosis (and later death) on U.S. soil touched off a nationwide panic. Suddenly, Ebola was everywhere—dominating headlines, trending on social media, fueling the 24-hour news cycle. For a time, the fear and misinformation fueling the hysteria threatened to undermine relief efforts and overshadow the ongoing tragedy in West Africa.

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  • Attack, alter, evade: The immune system’s critical role in tumor destruction and adaptation

    Paul Goldsmith, January 30th, 2015

    One of the great misconceptions about cancer is that, since tumors originate from normal cells, they are able to disguise themselves from the immune system—lurking undetected and unopposed as they divide and proliferate. In reality, the immune system is no passive observer when it comes to cancer. Evidence is mounting that many tumors undergo almost constant immune attack. But just how these attacks are initiated and what their effect is on different tumor types has remained largely unexplored. Until now.

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