Pathology Research Overview

The Division of Research, led by J. Keith Joung, MD, PhD, Associate Chief of Pathology, Research, encompasses research by Pathology Service faculty that is divided among a number of different laboratories and departments. Peer-review funded investigators are centered in the Molecular Pathology Unit (Drs. David Louis, Keith Joung, Atul BhanDavid Langenau, Martin Aryee, John IafrateMiguel RiveraDennis Sgroi, Anat Stemmer-Rachamimov and Mario L. Suvà, MD, PhD).


Additional departmental investigators are located in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (Dr. Bradley Bernstein), the Experimental Pathology Unit (Drs. Frederic Preffer and James Stone), the Immunopathology Research (Drs. Robert Colvin and Rex Neal Smith), the Translational Oncology Laboratory (Drs. John Iafrate and Dora Dias-Santagata, PhD) and Pathology Informatics and Imaging Research Unit (Drs. Anand Dighe, Thomas Gudewicz, James Michaelson and David Wilbur).

Multiple Pathology faculty have funded laboratory facilities and research efforts conducted in collaboration with other departments:

Two HMS Pathology faculty have their laboratories in the Mass General Cancer Center (Drs. Andi McClatchey and Lee Zou). In addition, most Pathology Service staff are involved in diverse clinicopathological research activities. View faculty links to research laboratories.

Pathology Research activities occupy approximately 20,000 square feet within Pathology, with Pathology researchers receiving over $10 million in direct costs of annual research support. Research activities have been expanded greatly over the past seven years, including: creation of the Division; recruitment of ten basic scientists at the Assistant Professor level (with seven as full members of the Center for Cancer Research, four as associate members of the Harvard-MIT Broad Institute and four as members of the Harvard Medical School Biological and Biomedical Sciences program), as well as a veterinary pathologist (with the Center for Comparative Medicine) and two molecular diagnostic pathologists; acquisition of considerable additional Pathology research space that has been extensively renovated; expansion in the number of Harvard and MIT PhD candidate graduate students training in Mass General Pathology laboratories; and provision of competitive pilot grants to junior clinical faculty. During this time, the group has seen an extraordinary increase in the amount of NIH funding.

The Division of Research works with all Units of the Pathology Service to foster its research mission. Activities include a popular, weekly pan-departmental Molecular Pathology and Research (MPR) conference, development of a molecular pathology rotation for Pathology residents, a pathology research mentoring program for residents, and an NIH Training Grant that supports seven fellows per year. The Division oversees a number of core facilities that offer services including expert subspecialty pathologist consultation, histology, immunohistochemistry, image acquisition/analysis, tissue microarray, laser capture microdissection, RNA in situ hybridization, FISH, array comparative genomic hybridization, and other tissue-based techniques. The Division has also participated in an Affymetrix microarray facility at the adjacent Mass General Cancer Center.

Plans for the near future include recruitment of additional basic science principal investigators, and development of new research space.


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