15 HMS researchers awarded grants to support more representative research for the Human Cell Atlas
Researchers worldwide are working together to create a common reference map of all human cells that will allow us to better understand and treat disease: the Human Cell Atlas (HCA). The HCA is already making an impact. For example, researchers used initial cell atlas data from the nose and airway to identify cells that may be entry points for SARS-CoV-2. Scientists have also used reference data from many organ systems to begin to clarify the complex pathology associated with COVID-19.
Yet to be truly useful as a reference atlas for the human body, the HCA must be broadly representative of determinants of health, including race, ethnicity and ancestry. A disease like COVID-19 highlights that many understudied communities and populations are heavily affected, and due to a myriad of factors, are more likely to contract the disease and experience more severe symptoms and outcomes. Read full Article at Harvard News