CDoT brings to the Broad community capabilities and resources that are common within the pharmaceutical industry, but are rarely available in an academic environment. This allows CDoT to follow the biology, taking whatever approach or combination of approaches is necessary to address the genetic, genomic, and biochemical opportunities revealed by Broad scientists in their search to understand the underpinnings of cancer, obesity, cardiovascular disorders, infectious diseases, and other disease areas.
In reality, CDoT projects are typically three-way partnerships, bringing together:
- Broad community scientists, who identify disease-specific pathways or targets of interest by genetic or genomic means.
- CDoT teams drawn from the center's functional areas, who bring discovery expertise, a non-conventional approach to candidate development, and the ability to develop lead candidates to a certain level of maturity.
- Pharmaceutical or biotechnology partners that bring a valuable knowledge and critical resources to ensure projects move forward.
CDoT projects are grounded in Broad scientists' genetic discoveries, letting the biology drive the selection of targets to be pursued. This approach raises confidence that candidates identified through the team's screening and development efforts will have a higher chance of success in the clinic, and creates a willingness to address targets traditionally labeled "undruggable" (e.g., transcription factors, protein-protein interactions).
Key project areas
- Cardiovascular disease: With the Broad Cardiovascular Disease Initiative and Bayer HealthCare, CDoT is leveraging insights from human genetics to help create new cardiovascular therapies.
- Type 2 diabetes: CDoT is collaborating with investigators in the Carlos Slim Center for Health Research to identify, based on genetic studies of T2D and T2D-related metabolic traits conducted through the Slim Initiative in Genomic Medicine for the Americas (SIGMA), novel compounds for use in studying disease mechanisms and for therapeutic development.
- Kidney disease: Also with SIGMA, CDoT is a key component in a full-scale chemical biology program aimed at developing novel drug leads for treating medullary cystic kidney disease 1 (MCKD1), a rare hereditary renal disease.
- Diseases of aging: CDoT is an active participant in an institute-wide partnership with Calico focused on advancing the understanding of age-related diseases and translating findings into new therapeutics.
- Cancer: CDoT teams are collaborating with the Broad's Cancer Program to target vulnerabilities being uncovered by the systematic genomic and functional characterization of the cancer genome.