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Barbara Weir


Cowley GS, Weir BS, Vazquez F, et al. Parallel genome-scale loss of function screens in 216 cancer cell lines for the identification of context-specific genetic dependencies. Sci Data. 2014;1:140035. eCollection 2014.

Cheung HW, Cowley GS, Weir BA, et al. Systematic investigation of genetic vulnerabilities across cancer cell lines reveals lineage-specific dependencies in ovarian cancer. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2011;108(30):12372–12377.

Weir BA, Woo MS, Getz G, et al. Characterizing the cancer genome in lung adenocarcinoma. Nature. 2007;450(7171):893–898.

Barbara Weir, Ph.D.

Barbara Weir is a research scientist II in the Cancer Program of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, where she works under the direction of William Hahn. She works on Project Achilles, which looks for genes for which deletion or reduced expression is essential in cancer cells. As cancers have a variety of genomic alterations (different mutations, copy number and expression changes), the Project Achilles researchers specifically look for these essential genes with this in mind, profiling many cancer cell lines with a variety of genomic alterations, in order to find context-specific essential genes. These represent genes that may respond to drug treatment (once drugs can be made to target them) and also have a genomic event that may identify the patient population where such treatment is more likely to be effective.

Weir joined the Broad Institute in 2005 during her postdoctoral studies, which she had started at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in the Meyerson Lab. Upon completing her postdoc in 2008, she started her current staff scientist position. She received the Broad's Excellence in Collaboration/Support of Science award in 2014 for her work with the C-DAWG team, which worked to develop a database of cell line perturbation data (small molecule and genetic perturbations) along with cell line genomic characterization data, to enable more integrative analyses.

Weir holds a Ph.D. in biology from the University of California, San Diego, and a B.S. in biology from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

Contact Barbara Weir via email at

June 2016