Powerful genetic factors influence the biological mechanisms of addiction.
The Jackson Laboratory is the engine that powers precision medicine.
Since its inception, The Jackson Laboratory has led the discovery of causes, treatments and cures for some of humankind's most devastating genetic diseases. Today, we are speeding the path of discovery from the laboratory bench to clinical care. We are combining the skills and knowledge of our scientists with our institutional strengths in disease modeling and bioinformatics, connecting genetics to genomics, and using our unparalleled knowledge of mouse models of disease to understand the human condition.
JAX research programs are leading efforts to improve human health worldwide.
JAX is using the latest research methods and tools to investigate a variety of cancers, including breast, lung, brain, gastric and blood. JAX’s National Cancer Institute‑designated Cancer Center provides robust support for its innovative research program, which combines patient and experimental data with advanced genomic capabilities to better understand cancer and identify therapeutic targets. The goal is to provide oncologists with precise therapy options for each individual’s cancer.
Unfortunately, many current cancer treatments can make it even harder for female patients to have children. In particular, women who receive radiation therapy near their reproductive organs are often left with shortened reproductive life spans or complete infertility. As a result, many women are unable to have children even after their cancer has been eliminated or has gone into remission. Ewelina Bolcun-Filas is exploring how to protect female fertility despite radiation-induced DNA damage so female cancer patients retain the option of having children later in life.
Immunology research at JAX has uncovered some of the most important functions of our immune system. Since George Snell won the 1980 Nobel Prize for his work investigating the genetics of the major histocompatibility complex, JAX researchers have revealed the complex genetics underlying autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes and lupus. Current work includes improving the ability to study human immune response in experimental systems and investigating how to provoke an immune response to target and destroy cancer cells.
Obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) afflict a large proportion of the aging population with nearly 40 percent of adults being obese. Jürgen Naggert aims to identify new obesity and type 2 diabetes mutations and their genetic modifiers, and to determine how the underlying mutations cause the disease. As we age, the risks of certain diseases increase over time, including chronic kidney disease (CKD). CKD has increased by 95 percent over the last 10 years and is recognized as an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Ron Korstanje is currently working to identify key genetic factors that contribute to the decline of function in the aging kidney, to learn their role in the kidney and to understand why variations of these factors lead to different outcomes.
JAX is researching all aspects of neurological function, from the brain to sensory input to muscle. Dysfunction of these systems leads to serious diseases and disorders such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, schizophrenia, addiction, blindness, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and muscular dystrophy. Investigators are discovering the nuanced mechanisms that develop and maintain neural function, and how they can be disrupted in disease. The research is essential to finding the underlying causes of neurological diseases and to provide the insight necessary to develop early detection screens and effective disease interventions.
Research into the basic mechanisms of aging to find the genetic and physiological causes of age-related diseases and disorders.
JAX is thinking differently about how the body’s immune response and inflammation contribute to a variety of diseases, including cancer and diabetes.
JAX is using advanced sequencing techniques for infectious disease diagnostics and developing microbiome-based therapeutics for diseases.
Rare diseases are not rare, more than 30 million people in the U.S. have a rare disease, for which there are no cures and few effective treatments.
Regenerative medicine is a relatively new field of study that treats injuries and diseases by harnessing the body’s own regenerative capabilities.