About the Broad Center

Innovative and collaborative research to understand and treat the world’s most devastating diseases

Dear Colleagues,

I am honored and excited to begin my tenure as the Director of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research (known to many of us as the IRM). As many of you know, I started my career here as an Assistant Professor in 2007, as a joint hire between the Dept of Surgery and the IRM; I am so grateful for the opportunities that this community has provided for my career. It has been a joy to form collaborations and friendships with so many of you over the years.

Our stem cell program has a strong foundation, established by Dr. Arnold Kriegstein’s leadership and vision. We are fortunate to have a membership of uniquely talented investigators on multiple UCSF campuses, including in our state-of-the-art Regeneration Medicine Building. We have experienced and committed staff members who have ensured seamless continuation of our program during a pandemic and this time of transition. This robust foundation will be important as we define our identify and set a vision for the next decade.

We are living in a transformative era in medicine: next-generation sequencing technologies are rapidly improving our ability to understand cell biology in health and disease, and our newfound ability to edit the genome offers an incredible potential to correct pathogenic mutations. Within UCSF, the recent growth of numerous scientific Centers and Institutes on multiple campuses, as well as the renewed focus to expand the scientific programs and infrastructure at Parnassus, offer multiple opportunities for productive collaborations. The growing commitment to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion, both locally and globally, brings a new lens to our views about our faculty, staff, and learners, as well as the diseases that we study.

The refunding of CIRM promises to bring significant new opportunities for stem cell, gene therapy, and translational/clinical research, as well as support for educating the next generation. There are recurring grant submissions in both discovery research and clinical translation; they also provide a platform to interact with the public to communicate the importance of our science. Continuing our productive partnership with CIRM will allow us to make stem cell therapies a reality for many patients with debilitating conditions.

In short, the stars are aligned for our collective success: we have the potential to improve our knowledge base in many key areas of stem cell biology, as well as develop life-saving therapies for many diseases in which our stem cell community has specific expertise. As a clinician-scientist, I am excited to promote excellence on both sides of the bridge and build systems that can enable appropriate programs to cross the “valley of death” into clinical translation. My vision is to transform the IRM by strengthening our research programs in strategic areas, forging intentional collaborations across campuses, and improving our capacity for clinical translation.

 

Tippi C. MacKenzie, MD

Director, Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research

John G. Bowes Distinguished Professor in Stem Cell and Tissue Biology