Blogs

A partnership in the name of reproducible research

Angela Page, February 27th, 2015

In 1610, Galileo Galilei set a scientific precedent for the next half millennium: he published his notebooks. Sidereus Nuncius, as the publication was officially dubbed, documented Galilei’s observation of several astronomical features, including the orbit of Jupiter’s moons around the planet and the play of light and shadow on the earth&rsqu

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Epigenomics roadmap: where the road has led

Veronica Meade-Kelly, February 20th, 2015

The completion of the human reference genome over a decade ago served as a springboard for countless studies of genetic variation and its role in disease, but understanding how the body operates at the DNA sequence-level isn’t enough to resolve some of the finer points of human biology. Specifically: how can the same sequence of genetic code give rise to over 200 different cell types that perform distinct biological functions? And how might the processes that give rise to that functional variation contribute to human disease?

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Dynamic profiling of the protein life cycle in response to pathogens

Lisa Girard, February 13th, 2015

Cellular protein levels are dictated by the net balance of mRNA expression (the type of RNA that provides genetic information for proteins), protein synthesis, and protein degradation. While changes in protein levels are commonly inferred from measuring changes in mRNA levels (due to the difficulties involved in measuring protein levels), it’s not often clear whether determining RNA levels is actually a good proxy for measuring protein levels.

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Structural variation goes extreme

Leah Eisenstadt, February 6th, 2015

From person to person, the human genome varies in a number of important ways. Some of the variation is in the form of genetic misspellings – single nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs. Other variation takes the form of so-called “structural variation:” as genetic rearrangements, or as missing or extra segments of DNA, known as copy number variation (CNV). Scientists at the Broad Institute and elsewhere are working to locate and characterize many different types of variation and look for connections between the variants and human traits and disease.

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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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Introducing: B60

Veronica Meade-Kelly, November 25th, 2014

B60, a new video series appearing on the Broad Institute YouTube channel, is a window into Broad science and culture. Each 60-second video offers a glimpse into the innovative work taking place at the institute, and the spirit of collaboration and creativity that makes it possible. Watch the series to learn how the Broad is tackling some of the most ambitious challenges in biomedicine today.

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Cancer gene found hiding in plain sight

Veronica Meade-Kelly, October 27th, 2014

A mutation that may be driving as many as 20 percent of endometrial and colorectal cancers has come to light this week, thanks to a study by researchers from the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

The researchers describe finding the connection between the gene RNF43 and these cancers earlier this week in Nature Genetics.

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Broad Paper Vids: Metabolic changes signal early development of pancreatic cancer

Paul Goldsmith, October 3rd, 2014

Pancreatic cancer is the tenth most common cancer in the United States, but the fourth most common cause of cancer death. This disparity is due, in part, to the disease’s elusive nature. Because the pancreas is located deep in the abdomen, symptoms often present only after cancer has spread to other places in the body. But this week, a team of researchers from the Broad, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, MIT, and elsewhere reported the discovery of metabolic changes that indicate early development of the disease.

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Broad Institute, Ragon Institute aim to help “end HIV” by awarding new catalytic grants

Leah Eisenstadt, September 25th, 2014

Despite significant gains made by the scientific and medical communities to understand the HIV virus, an effective HIV/AIDS vaccine – the best hope for ending the epidemic – is still out of reach.

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Sangeeta Bhatia awarded Lemelson-MIT Prize

Veronica Meade-Kelly, September 8th, 2014

Broad senior associate member Sangeeta Bhatia has been named the 2014 recipient of the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize. The honor, which is celebrating its 20th year, recognizes outstanding, mid-career inventors who are improving the world through technological invention, and demonstrating a commitment to mentorship in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

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