The Edison Family Center for Genome Sciences & Systems Biology (CGS_SB), was the first interdisciplinary BioMed21 Center to be established at the Washington University School of Medicine. Its mission is to:
- Function as home to an interdisciplinary group of investigators from several departments and schools who focus on human genomics, metagenomics (characterizing the assembly and operations of microbial communities and the mechanisms by which they shape human biology), and systems biology (characterizing the evolution and dynamic operations of networks of interacting genes and gene products with the goal of creating predictive models that accurately explain their properties);
- Help ensure that Washington University will remain at the forefront of the genome sciences by catalyzing co-development of new experimental and computational methods and applying these methods to novel model systems. These efforts range from studies of fundamental questions related to transcriptional regulation in different mammalian cell lineages, including epigenetic mechanisms, to analyses of how microbes function in a community context (e.g., functions related to antibiotic resistance, and the biotransformation of food ingredients into metabolic products that affect host biology). Work includes development of preclinical models that allow characterization of disease mechanisms and identification of new therapeutic targets, the development of therapeutic leads and the translation of these results to studies of humans with disorders representing pressing global health challenges (e.g., diarrheal diseases, childhood undernutrition).
- Serve as a ‘proving ground’ for applying new strategies for educating students, post-doctoral fellows and faculty to work at the interface between the biological, physical, computational, and engineering sciences. Our faculty serve as directors of the PhD Program in Computational and Systems Biology in the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences, and function as mentors to young faculty at early stages of their career development.