CMM 595H Problems in Biology of Complex Diseases

Instructor’s Name:  Dr. Donata Vercelli

Course Description:  Human complex diseases such as asthma, cancer, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, are major biomedical challenges, because they are common but difficult to decipher. The complexity of these diseases is reflected by their phenotypic heterogeneity and likely results from intricate interactions among genetic, environmental and developmental factors that modify disease susceptibility and severity.

Understanding complex diseases is urgent, because these conditions impose a burden on our society. Yet, this goal cannot be achieved by isolated research disciplines. Rather, it requires a novel paradigm that successfully integrates basic and clinical research across multiple fields and translates mechanisms into phenotypes and phenotypes into treatments. This novel paradigm provides the underpinning for this Colloquium.

The Colloquium features speakers who are nationally and internationally renowned for their work on environmental biology, immunological and clinical phenotyping, microbiota, developmental biology, epigenetics, genetic epidemiology, population genetics, functional genomics of human and animal models. The theme and vision of the Colloquium are unique in that the discussion focuses particularly on the biological components shared by ostensibly distinct complex diseases (for instance, asthma, neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases). The underlying assumption, supported by much emerging evidence, is that these shared components are features that define the mechanistic architecture of complex diseases as a group. The goal of the Colloquium is to provide a platform that will catalyze broad, expert discussions on these foundational topics, thereby fostering the emergence of a new experimental and conceptual paradigm in complex disease biology.   Identical to:  GENE 595H, MCB 595H, IMB 595H & PCOL 595H.

Credit hours:  2

Semester Offered:  Spring

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