Research

Research at Whitehead

Whitehead Institute provides researchers with the resources and freedom to follow their scientific instincts, form novel collaborations, and conduct high-risk research. While probing basic biological processes, the Institute’s 16 faculty Members and 2 Fellows develop innovative technologies and lay the foundation for projects that improve human health. They run pioneering programs in cancer, immunology, developmental biology, stem cell science, regenerative medicine, genetics, and genomics.

Members

 

Fellows

Research News

Diagram of CDPK1 in its active and inactive forms

August 24, 2015

Tiny antibodies point to vulnerability in disease-causing parasites

By teasing apart the structure of an enzyme vital to the parasites that cause toxoplasmosis and malaria, Whitehead Institute scientists have identified a potentially ‘drugable’ target that could prevent parasites from entering and exiting host cells.

Electron microscope image of a mitochondrion

July 31, 2015

Amino acid shortage curbs proliferation in cells with mitochondrial dysfunction

According to Whitehead Institute researchers, cells with malfunctioning mitochondria are unable to proliferate due to a shortage of the amino acid aspartate, not because of an energy crisis, as was once thought. Mitochondrial dysfunction plays a role in a host of relatively rare disorders as well as neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson’s disease.

June 4, 2015

Forks colliding: How DNA breaks during re-replication

Leveraging a novel system designed to examine the double-strand DNA breaks that occur as a consequence of gene amplification during DNA replication, Whitehead Institute scientists are bringing new clarity to the causes of such genomic damage. Moreover, because errors arising during DNA replication and gene amplification result in chromosomal abnormalities often found in malignant cells, these new findings may bolster our understandings of certain drivers of cancer progression.

Image of human red blood cells

May 11, 2015

Repurposed anti-cholesterol drug could improve treatment-resistant anemias

Using a mouse model, the lab of Whitehead Institute Founding Member Harvey Lodish, has now determined that combining the cholesterol-lowering drug fenofibrate with glucocorticoids could allow for dramatically lower steroid doses in the treatment of  Diamond Blackfan anemia and other erythropoietin-resistant anemias.

Image of cells with and without RUNX1 turned on

May 6, 2015

Scientists identify gene required for differentiation of breast stem cells

Scientists have applied a new method of analyzing cell states to identify a gene required for breast stem cells to differentiate. This gene, RUNX1, is deregulated or mutated in some leukemias and breast cancers. The novel approach, known as PEACS, could also be used to screen for drugs that activate or inhibit the expression regulators of stem cell differentiation.

Recent papers

March 26, 2015

Nutrient-sensing mechanisms across evolution.

Cell. 2015 Mar 26;161(1):67-83.


March 24, 2015

Chromatin proteomic profiling reveals novel proteins associated with histone-marked genomic regions.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Mar 24;112(12):3841-6.


March, 23, 2015

Increasing the efficiency of precise genome editing with CRISPR-Cas9 by inhibition of nonhomologous end joining.

Nat Biotechnol. 2015 Mar 23.


All research papers

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