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Kara Lassen


Kuo SY, Castoreno AB, Aldrich LN, et al. Small-molecule enhancers of autophagy modulate cellular disease phenotypes suggested by human genetics. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2015;112(31):E4281-7.

Begun J, Lassen KG, Jijon HB, et al. Integrated genomics of Crohn’s disease risk variant identifies a role for CLEC12A in antibacterial autophagy. Cell Rep. 2015;11(12):1905–1918.

Lassen KG, Kuballa P, Conway KL, et al. Atg16L1 T300A variant decreases selective autophagy resulting in altered cytokine signaling and decreased antibacterial defense. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2014 ;111(21):7741–7746.


Kara Lassen, Ph.D.

Kara Lassen is a group leader in the Program in Medical and Population Genetics at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. Her group focuses on understanding the interactions between host genetics and gut bacteria in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease, using integrated functional genomic approaches to identify key cellular pathways underlying disease. She has a particular interest in identifying and characterizing novel pathways central to innate host-pathogen interactions that intersect with autophagy.

Lassen graduated magna cum laude from Wake Forest University with a B.S. in biology and mathematics. She received a Ph.D. in immunology from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine where she was awarded the Hans Joaquim Prochaska Research Award. Lassen also worked as a research scientist at the Gladstone Institutes of Virology and Immunology at UCSF. Her research interests have previously focused on HIV pathogenesis and viral reservoirs. She joined the Broad Institute in 2012 after serving as a scientific editor at Cell.

Contact Lassen via email at

January 2016