ISB News

Members of Hood Lab Win First Place in the IMPROVER Diagnostic Signature Challenge

Kai Wang, Ji Hoon Cho and intern Alan Lin, all of Dr. Lee Hood’s group, participated in the IMPROVER Diagnostic Signature Challenge and won first place for the psoriasis sub-challenge. IMPROVER stands for Industrial Methodology for Process Verification in Research; it’s a method for verifying scientific data and concepts in systems biology research.

Juan Caballero Solves InnoCentive Challenge

Juan Caballero, a post doctoral fellow in Dr. Lee Hood’s group, answered an open call through InnoCentive for a solution to combat Citrus Greening Disease, which affects about 18 percent of citrus trees in Florida. He was awarded $10,000 for designing the right RNAi to control the viral disease.

ISB and Algae Biofuel

On Nov. 1, ISB and San Diego-based Sapphire Energy announced a strategic partnership to apply systems biology to algae with the goal of significantly increasing oil yield and improving resistance to crop predators and environmental factors in order to further the advancement of commercialized algae biofuel production. “Together, we have complementary expertise that will allow us to understand, reverse engineer and rationally alter the gene networks for fuel production in…

Profiles of Innovation: Lee Hood at Northeastern University

Our Lee Hood was the featured guest on Nov. 5 at Boston's Northeastern University for the Profiles in Innovation Presidential Speaker Series. You can read the accompanying news story here.

How Systems Biology Can Help Improve ‘Green Crude’ – aka Algae Fuel

Sapphire Energy and ISB today announced a partnership that will lead to exciting discoveries in commercial algae fuel production. You can read the release here. But to hear directly from Dr. Nitin Baliga, who is ISB's Director for Integrative Biology, on why this partnership is unique, watch this short interview.

ISB’s Role in TCGA

When you see a reference to “cancer research,” you know that it’s important. But do you really know what it means and how complex the research is? Many ISB scientists are entrenched in molecular cancer research. To better appreciate what they’re tackling, let’s talk about The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) project. In understanding cancers, researchers first have to know what errors in the DNA of tumor cells cause them to…

An Evening to Remember

About 20 years ago, Carole Ellison attended a lecture by Dr. Lee Hood shortly after he had arrived at the University of Washington to start the Department of Molecular Biotechnology. She was impressed by his vision for the future of science and healthcare and vowed to meet him one day. This wish and her lifelong interest in science and human health led her to ISB. This summer, Carole finally was…

The Digital Doctor

What You Saw in the News: The Oct. 9 issue of The New York Times featured a Science Times special section focused on “The Digital Doctor.” The stories ranged from how smartphone apps and electronic medical records are redefining how doctors practice medicine to how dentists can now create a custom crown for patients in less than an hour. Doctors also are engaging in “telemedicine” to reach people in remote…

Science Education Honors

In June, Dr. Nitin Baliga, ISB’s director for integrative biology, was presented with the 2012 Alvin J. Thompson Award for his significant contributions to bringing systems science education to high schools throughout Washington State and beyond. In August, Zhihao Tan and Michelle Hays, members of the Aimée Dudley group, took first place in the graduate student poster competition at the Genetics Society of America’s Yeast Genetics and Molecular Biology Meeting…

One of ISB’s Superpowers: Mass Spectrometry

Above: Mark Sartain at the quadrupole time of flight mass spectrometer. By Terry Farrah I recently observed ISB at its creative, cross-disciplinary, collaborative best. The story came to my attention during a lab meeting and it involved Dr. Mark Sartain, whose desk is kitty corner to mine. The background: Drs. Elizabeth Gold and Stephen Ramsey, researchers in the laboratory of Dr. Alan Aderem, who co-founded ISB and is now the president of…

ISB Co-Authored Nature Paper Featured in the New York Times

The Ilya Shmulevich Group at ISB has been participating in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) project as a Genome Data Analysis Center. The first paper resulting from the main phase of the TCGA project – "Comprehensive molecular characterization of human colon and rectal cancer" – was published in the July 19, 2012, issue of Nature and also featured on the front page of the New York Times. ISB teamed up…

ISB Featured in Google I/O Conference Keynote

We were very excited to watch the live stream of the keynote from the Google I/O conference today, because it featured work from ISB's Shmulevich Lab, which is one of a group of research organizations that has been working on The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). To help visualize the TCGA data, the lab created the Cancer Regulome Explorer using Google App Engine and Google Compute Engine. Google Compute Engine is…

Science Luminaries

In June, Dr. Lee Hood, ISB’s president and co-founder, was one of the featured speakers at the Seattle Science Festival’s Science Luminaries event. His co-luminaries were world-renowned physicist Dr. Stephen Hawking and paleontologist Jack Horner. ISB also co-hosted the South Lake Union Science Trek for K-12 students.

Seattle Times: Cool Jobs Featuring ISB Scientist Karlyn Beer

Karlyn Beer, one of our grad students who works in Nitin Baliga's Lab, was featured in the Seattle Times' "Cool Jobs" section. An excerpt is below. See the full story here. What do you do? I'm a Ph.D. student at the University of Washington, and I work at Institute for Systems Biology, studying how microbes navigate their way through complicated and ever-changing environments I work with a single-celled organism native to hypersaline habitats like the…

New Senior Vice President

In May, ISB welcomed Dr. Robert Lipshutz as our Senior Vice President for Strategic Partnerships and Chief Business Officer. Rob came to us after having spent 19 years as an executive at Affymetrix, which develops genetic analysis technology. Rob has a PhD in mathematics and is looking forward to helping ISB expand our reach.

ISB Innovation in Action

Above: Kristian Swearingen and the re-engineered FAIMS device. (Editor's Note: This post shows a wonderful example of the collaborative, innovative and entrepreneurial ethic that ISB nurtures. Even if the science or technology is difficult to explain concisely, the cross-disciplinary and integrative nature of how our work is done and the pioneering spirit come through. How cool is that?) By Terry Farrah What do you do when your mass spectrometer accessory…

Tom Massey and his daughter, Alexis.

ISB Symposium: Not Just for Grownups

by Tom Massey How do you keep a 12 year old who learned Arabic in fourth grade “because it sounds exotic” engaged? That question has kept me and my wife on a circuitous journey to educate our daughter, Alexis. Our basic philosophy is to anchor her to a stable core of a few activities while having a continuous stream of “new things” in her orbit. Once every few years, a…

Arab Spring for Biology? Choose Open Access

This weekend, Burak Kutlu, one of our research scientists in the Hood Lab, is attending the Sage Bionetworks Commons Congress in San Francisco. The Congress will focus on "Building Better Models of Disease Together: Moving beyond the current medical information system and its rewards." He was selected as an outstanding Young Investigator. Here's his statement on why open access is important: "The economics performing open science is not well defined. One of the reasons that…