ISB News

Miranda Johnson

Get to Know Miranda Johnson, ISB’s First-Ever AmeriCorps Member

This past fall, AmeriCorps member Miranda Johnson packed her bags and left her home state of Illinois to join ISB as a Systems Thinkers in STEM Coordinator. Johnson is the first AmeriCorps member at ISB, so we had quite a few questions about how she got here, her experience thus far, and her future plans. 

Cultivated meat illustration

How Systems Biology Is Helping Advance the Cultivated Meat Industry

The quest to create cultivated meat has been a true multidisciplinary puzzle. It’s biology, engineering, physics, bioinformatics, mathematics, computer science, and more. Enter systems biology. ISB and other organizations are toiling to better understand how to create lab-grown meat in a safe, effective manner that can eventually scale up to compete with traditional meat.

Baliga, Peterson and Srinivas

ISB Creates Algorithms To Accelerate Discovery of Efficacious Treatments for Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is the world’s second leading infectious disease killer after COVID-19. Drug resistance to TB is a public health crisis. ISB researchers have developed algorithms to predict the efficacy of drugs in treating Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB), the causative agent for TB. These research findings were published in the journal Cell Reports Methods. 

Dr. Jack Gilbert on the State of the Microbiome Field

In the final ISB-Town Hall Seattle Science Series of 2021, ISB Assistant Professor Dr. Sean Gibbons sat down with UCSD Professor Dr. Jack Gilbert, and the two microbiome experts discussed past research, exciting science happening today, promising products and therapies on the horizon, and much more. 

Reimagine: Your Immune System Event Generates $60,000 to Fuel Critical ISB Research

More than 300 people registered for Reimagine: Your Immune System, ISB’s annual virtual fundraiser, for an evening that included guest appearances Nobel laureate Dr. David Baltimore, immunology expert Dr. Mark Davis, ISB President Dr. Jim Heath, and a host of ISB researchers studying the human immune system.

Nir Barzilai on Health Span, Life Span and the New Science of Longevity

Longevity and aging researcher Dr. Nir Barzilai participated in a fireside chat conversation with ISB Co-founder and Professor Dr. Lee Hood. The two renowned scientists talked about Barzilai’s study of 750 centenarians, how aging research has changed over the years, and what exciting developments are coming. 

Dr. Andrew Magis: Identifying Markers for Cancer Years Before Diagnosis

By taking detailed measurements of blood and other biological samples, ISB scientists have shown they can identify markers for cancer years before diagnosis. This was the topic of a recent Research Roundtable presentation delivered by Dr. Andrew Magis, Director of Data Science in ISB’s Health Data Science Lab.

Why ISB’s Biobank Is Second to None

ISB has developed a biobank that is second to none. In this video, Dr. Jim Heath gives a behind-the-scenes look at the process of creating a biorepository, from taking the handoff of de-identified patient samples at the clinic to storing the processed samples in a deep-freeze cryo-chamber.

Microbiome and weight loss

Can You Lose Weight? Ask Your Microbiome

The strongest associations with weight loss success or failure – independent of BMI – are found in the genetic capacity of the gut microbiome. These new findings open the door to diagnostic tests that can identify people likely to lose weight with healthy lifestyle changes and those who might need more drastic interventions.

Drs. Jim Heath, Yapeng Su and Jihoon Lee

Metabolic Changes in Plasma and Immune Cells Associated with COVID-19 Severity, May Predict Patient Survival

Researchers from Institute for Systems Biology (ISB), Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and other organizations have uncovered underlying metabolic changes that regulate how immune cells react to COVID-19. These findings are associated with COVID-19 severity and may predict patient survival. The work was published in the journal Nature Biotechnology.

2021 ISB Microbiome Series

2021 ISB Virtual Microbiome Series Announced

Our multi-day microbiome-themed virtual course and symposium is back by popular demand! ISB is hosting a two-day course on October 13 & 14, followed by a symposium on October 15. Both events are virtual and free. The intended audience for these events are graduate students, postdocs, principal investigators, industry scientists, educators, clinicians, or any other variety of microbiome-curious person from across the globe.

Dr. Sean Gibbons Spotlighted in Alumni Profile

MIT’s Center for Microbiome Informatics and Therapeutics recently featured Dr. Sean Gibbons in an alumni profile. Gibbons discussed his academic arc that started in Montana and led to his master’s studies (sponsored by a Fulbright Graduate Fellowship) at Uppsala University in Sweden, completing his PhD in biophysical sciences at the University of Chicago, and conducting his postdoc work in the lab of Eric Alm. He also talked about some of…

Spotlight On Amy Zamora, Former ISB Systems Research Scholar

Between 2018 and 2020, Amy Zamora’s tenure as a systems research scholar allowed her to merge her two interests – math and biology – and to learn a lot more along the way. “I didn’t really know how to combine my passions until I came to ISB,” she said.

Tackling Lyme Disease with Immunity

It’s Lyme disease season in many areas of the United States, including the Northeast, the Midwest, and some places on the West Coast. In our latest Research Roundtable event, ISB Associate Professor Dr. Naeha Subramanian discussed the latest Lyme disease research conducted in her lab.

Wei Lab

New Technology Reveals Single Cancer Cells Have Different Appetites for Fatty Acids

A recently developed method by the Wei Lab at Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) and University of California, Riverside provides new insights into cancer biology by allowing researchers to show how fatty acids are absorbed by single cells. This work was published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

Glioblastoma tumor slice and corresponding density map

Looking at Tumors Through a New Lens

To improve the efficacy of neoadjuvant immune checkpoint blockade against glioblastoma, researchers are looking for vulnerabilities in surgically removed tissues – a difficulty due to the vast differences within the tumor and between patients. To address this, ISB researchers and their collaborators developed a new way to study tumors.

Fireside Chat with NIH Director Francis Collins and ISB Co-founder Dr. Lee Hood 

ISB Co-founder Dr. Lee Hood hosted a fireside chat with NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins. The renowned scientists talked about their early careers and long friendship, the challenge of COVID-19, the preceding scientific work that led to the fast development of COVID vaccines, and much more. 

Claire Reid / Los Angeles Times; Getty Images, Unsplash

Dr. Lee Hood Writes ‘Second Opinion’ Columns for Los Angeles Times

ISB Co-founder Dr. Lee Hood is credited with coining the term “systems biology” and has been a longtime advocate of P4 medicine. Now, Hood has been selected by the Los Angeles Times to share his insights in a new weekly op-ed column, called Second Opinion.