Genomics Centers of Excellence Awards (R)
ICOC Funds Committed:
The Collaborative Center for Stem Cell Genomics is a full service Genomics Center dedicated to the application of innovative genomic approaches to important problems of human stem cell biology. Filled with leading experts in genomics, bioinformatics, biostatistics, computational biology, and stem cell biology from four preeminent public research institutions in California, the Center advances the science of human stem cell research, provides cutting-edge approaches to genomic data analysis, and engages Californian stem cell researchers in collaborative studies. To advance the science of human stem cell research, the Center will initiate four transformative projects: (1) develop a novel way to measure how each of millions of gene combinations affects mammalian cell development and apply this technology to stem cell research; (2) use a unique panel of embryonic stem cell lines to study their development; (3) use a single-cell approach to study stem cell self renewal; and (4) generate a single cell resource of human nerve cell gene expression pattern to improve cell replacement therapies. In addition, the Center will support 12 collaborative projects from leading Californian stem cell researchers and help them apply genomic tools in their work. The expertise and creativity of the scientists in the Center, coupled with its considerable resources, uniquely positions the Center to advance stem cell research through genomic and epigenomic analysis.
Statement of Benefit to California:
The Collaborative Center for Stem Cell Genomics benefits the State of California and its citizens in 4 major ways. First, the Center applies cutting-edge genomic and bioinformatic approaches to study important questions in stem cell biology. As such, it hastens the pace of stem cell research and brings us a few step closer to reaping the medical benefits of stem cell research. Second, the research projects being pursued by the Center will create new technologies that may be used for treatment of neurological and other disorders, and identification of gene combinations that promote formation of specific tissues. Great economic benefits will be realized in California even if a fraction of the research conducted in the Center is successful. Third, the expertise found in the Center is unparalleled. The Center experts are committed to collaborating with other stem cell research groups to do the best science. When new discoveries are made, important new research questions will likely arise. Center supported projects will be in great position to compete for federal grants and private funding, leading to more research dollars coming to California. Finally, the Center's use of state-of-the-art technologies will allow us to train a new generation of researchers, technicians, and computer scientists, thus increasing the competitive edge of California. Many of the young scientists from our Center will likely become key workers in new biotech companies in the state.