JESSICA (PLATI) CORREIA
Instructor in Pathology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School
Research Associate in Biomedical Informatics at Harvard Medical School
Ph.D. in Chemistry, Brown University
B.S. in Chemistry, Providence College
Research Fellow (Includes NRSA Fellow 07/08-02/11), Division of Experimental Pathology (Roya Khosravi-Far, Ph.D.), Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School
My doctoral research at Brown University entailed using methods in molecular biology, in conjunction with a range of biochemical and biophysical techniques, to characterize proteins that are implicated in human disease. As a postdoctoral fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Harvard Medical School (HMS), I further developed my knowledge of molecular biology methods as well as gained research experience in bioinformatics. During my postdoctoral training, my research was primarily focused on a pancreatic cancer biomarker discovery project. I collaborated with researchers at the BIDMC Genomics and Proteomics Center to develop and implement a meta-analysis approach to uncover consistent alterations in gene expression associated with pancreatic cancer.
In my current position at the Laboratory for Personalized Medicine (LPM), I have had the opportunity to enhance my knowledge and skills in translational bioinformatics. LPM is dedicated to translational research aimed at facilitating the use of genetic information in clinical decision making. As LPM is located in the Department of Pathology at BIDMC and the Center for Biomedical Informatics (CBMI) at HMS, I have continued to build on my interdisciplinary background by working on projects with individuals from various fields, including computer science, pathology, and clinical oncology. LPM is engaged in projects that involve characterization of cancer genomes through sequencing and other high-throughput genomics technologies. The main objective of these projects is to identify underlying genetic defects that drive tumorigenesis or play a role in drug response and thereby reveal clinically useful therapeutic targets and markers for response to treatment.
I have played a main role in managing LPM projects centered on breast cancer that aim to use an integrative analysis of data from several genomics technologies to find new candidate therapeutic targets and identify genomic profiles that are correlated with response to treatment and patient outcomes. I have also significantly contributed to a joint initiative by LPM and the Wall Lab at CBMI to develop a breast cancer clinical-grade variant database. Both high-quality analysis of raw genomic data for accurate detection of putative tumor-specific variants and precise annotation of variants with clinical importance are critical factors for achieving LPM’s ultimate goal of extracting clinically actionable information from an entire human genome.
In addition to my research efforts, I have also played a considerable part in the development of a new HMS course, Introduction to Bioinformatics I. The course covered the fundamentals of next-generation sequencing (NGS), including NGS technologies and data analysis, as well as the clinical applications and implications of NGS. I worked with the course directors to develop course material and arranged practicum sessions that allowed students to gain hands-on training with valuable NGS analysis tools.
I have been able to play a significant role in the initiation and progression of research projects that have great promise to facilitate major advances in clinical practice. As I advance in my career, I will continue the mission of translating genomic data into clinically actionable information to accelerate the realization of personalized cancer care and improve patient outcomes.