The Klarman Cell Observatory and the Broad Institute–Israel Partnership for Cell Circuit Research.

Human diseases arise from malfunctions in the cellular processes that control physiology – a key component is missing or defective; a key ‘circuit’ is over- or under- active. To understand disease and develop effective treatments, we need a comprehensive picture of all the ‘cellular components’ and all of the cellular circuits in which they function. The goal of the Broad Institute’s Klarman Cell Observatory is to create a pilot effort to systematically define cellular circuits in mammalian cells. This effort builds on breakthrough technologies and on collaborations that cut across scientific disciplines.

The Klarman Cell Observatory, established by the Klarman Family Foundation, is led by Broad Core Member and MIT Associate Professor Aviv Regev, who has pioneered a new paradigm for defining cellular circuitry. It has a dedicated team that is pursuing projects together with collaborators from throughout the Broad community and beyond.

The Klarman Cell Observatory consists of three major components:
  • The Cell Observatory Platform develops and deploys all of the experimental and computational approaches for systematically defining cellular circuits. These include capabilities for measuring all cellular components and their connections, reconstructing circuit models, and producing and delivering perturbing agents to cells.

  • Cell Observatory Projects reconstruct circuits in mammalian cells
    Flagship Projects to construct the full circuitry of key cell types.
    Collaborative Projects tackle specific parts of the circuitry, learning how to overcome key challenges and address key questions.
    These projects will be undertaken in collaboration with scientists in the Broad community, drawing on their deep expertise in a biological system. Approximately four collaborative projects will be selected each year.

  • The Broad Institute–Israel Partnership for Cell Circuit Research brings together Broad and Israeli scientists to tackle major challenges in cell circuitry. This program harnesses the expertise of Israeli scientists in computational and systems biology research to enhance and complement the Observatory effort. It includes funding for collaborative projects, a postdoctoral training program, and an annual symposium for Israeli and Broad scientists. The program is managed in close partnership with the Israeli Science Foundation (ISF).