Cancer Dependency Map

The mutations that cause cancer cells to grow also confer specific vulnerabilities that normal cells lack. These cancer-specific dependencies are compelling therapeutic targets. The problem is that, for the overwhelming majority of cancers, we do not fully understand relationships between the genetic features of cancer and cancer dependencies. A “cancer dependency map” (for instance, models of all genotypes tested for genetic and small-molecule dependencies) is needed, and the work of the Broad’s Cancer Program is laying the foundation for an international effort to develop such a resource for the community.

To do this, Broad scientists are deploying genetic and small molecule perturbation technologies to triangulate relationships between genomic features and “Achilles’ heels” across a wide-array of cancer types. In collaboration with the Genetic Perturbation Platform, hundreds of genome-wide vulnerability screens have been completed, together with advanced computational algorithms for data analysis. In addition, by working with the Center for the Science of Therapeutics,  we have demonstrated the feasibility of new approaches for pinpointing small molecule sensitivities at large-scale. Finally, through efforts such as the Cancer Cell Line Encyclopedia and Cancer Cell Line Factory, we are invested in characterizing, creating, and sharing new cancer cell models as a community effort to accelerate molecular and therapeutic discovery.

The Cancer Dependency Map project is committed to open science. We make all data generated by the project available to the public under a Creative Commons license, with new datasets released on a quarterly basis, ahead of publication, via the DepMap portal.


Results and data from our many projects can be accessed via Broad Data, Software and Tools.