News from the Broad

The Broad Institute is committed to open sharing not only of its scientific data and tools, but also information and news about our progress towards achieving our mission. Below are just a few highlights from the Broad scientific community.
  • Researchers unlock new CRISPR system for targeting RNA

    June 2nd, 2016
    Discovered in bacteria as viral defense mechanism, researchers program C2c2 to manipulate cellular RNA using CRISPR
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  • New findings on β-cell proliferation points to regenerative medicine approach to diabetes

    May 28th, 2016

    Loss of pancreatic β-cells or their proper function is characteristic of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, so restoring functional β-cell mass has been a major therapeutic goal in the field. A team led by Bridget Wagner at the Broad Institute's Center for the Science of Therapeutics, working with Broad associate member Rohit Kulkarni’s lab at Joslin Diabetes Center, showed that this may be achievable in humans. They found that the kinase-inhibiting enzyme 5-IT, which is known to promote β-cell mass in rodents, can also spark β-cell proliferation in humans by inhibiting the protein DYRK1A. The research, published in Diabetes, suggests a possible regenerative medicine approach to diabetes.

  • First large-scale proteogenomic study of breast cancer provides insight into potential therapeutic targets

    May 25th, 2016
    Building on data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) project, a multi-institutional team of scientists has completed the first large-scale “proteogenomic” study of breast cancer, linking DNA mutations to protein signaling and helping pinpoint the genes that drive cancer.
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  • Diverse drivers in lung cancer

    May 18th, 2016

    A team led by Matthew Meyerson (Broad Institute, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute), Ramaswamy Govindan (Washington University School of Medicine), and first author Joshua Campbell (Broad, Dana-Farber) performed exome sequencing on hundreds of samples of two of the most common lung cancer types: lung adenocarcinoma and lung squamous cell carcinoma. Appearing in Nature Genetics, the work revealed that the two share only a handful of mutated genes, so targeted therapies must be tailored for each type. The analysis also found that in both cancer types, around half of tumors had several “neoepitopes” — bits of protein discoverable by the immune system — suggesting that immunotherapy approaches could be successful in many lung tumors. Read more in the ITMO University release and GenomeWeb.

  • Eyeing a new model for studying Duane retraction syndrome

    May 17th, 2016

    Duane retraction syndrome (DRS) is a congenital eye-movement disorder that hinders outward gaze and causes retraction of the eye on attempted inward gaze. A new study from a team led by Elizabeth Engle of Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and the Broad Institute has identified and analyzed four mutations linked to the syndrome. The findings, published last week in the American Journal of Human Genetics, demonstrate that the disease can be successfully studied in mouse models, and offer new clues to how the disease develops.