Biomedical cores complement the interests of CSIBD investigators and promote research in areas of recognized priority in advancing the understanding of IBD.
The Human Genetics and Microbiome Core strives to provide the CSIBD community with current and emerging ‘omics technology to accelerate research on IBD and other digestive diseases. This core focuses on both the host and microbial dimensions and follow-on functional investigation that are at the leading edge of IBD research worldwide, and makes these approaches and results broadly available to the CSIBD community. Access to these resources is achieved through the provision of technical services, analytic support, and training for CSIBD members. The new IBD Data Science Commons provides investigators with a platform for management and computational analysis of large scale genetic and microbiome datasets. The core additionally provides access to comprehensive microbial stain libraries. The combined resources and expertise of this core are at the forefront of best practices in genetics and microbiome research that are available in few research environments.
The objective of the Morphology Core is to provide Center investigators with the technical support, expertise and access to instrumentation necessary for their morphological and cell biological studies related to IBD. The use of these often sophisticated techniques to examine the localization of proteins important in the pathogenesis of various forms of digestive disease is essential to the work being performed by investigators involved in this Center.
The Clinical Core serves an integral function of the CSIBD by providing an infrastructure to facilitate the translation of basic research findings into a clinical setting. The core serves as a hub between clinicians and basic scientists seeking to advance therapeutics and develop tools for early diagnosis and risk stratification. Key components of this core are the PRISM (Prospective Registry in IBD Study at MGH) and GIDER (GI Disease and Endoscopy Registery) registries, which together include more than 3,300 enrolled IBD patients and healthy individuals. In addition, the core provides clinical research support for consultations regarding study design, exectution, and analysis for studies involving human samples.
The objective of the Immunology Core is to provide CSIBD investigators with expertise in design, implementation and analysis for immunological assays by equipping the community with cost-effective access to crucial instruments, reagents, protocols, training and education. The Immunology Core offers access to both standard techniques and a number of newly developing, powerful immunologic techniques.
The objective of the Genetic Animal Models Core is to develop novel genetic technologies and model systems aimed at investigating genes and pathways to yield insight into how human genomic variants affect the pathogenesis of IBD and other digestive diseases. To support this objective, the core provides a range of established and novel genetic animal models that serve as tools to interrogate molecular mechanisms and signaling pathways that control mucosal host defenses and inflammation. To complement in vivo studies, the core facilitates access to a bank of genotyped mouse- and human-derived organoids as well as optimized tools, technologies, and protocols to manipulate organoids and primary epithelial cells.