Here at the Broad Institute, MIT and Harvard have combined forces to explore genetic structure using the brightest minds available in the country, and perhaps worldwide. Founded in 2003, the Broad’s goal was to continue the tradition of the Whitehead Institute, one of the world’s leading genomics and genetics laboratories, and a flagship of the Human Genome Project.

Eli and Edythe Broad donated $100 million to the foundation to give the institute life. A few months later, they would double down, totaling $200 million in donations. As things got rolling, and the foundation was on its feet, they endowed it permanently with another $400 million. They really wanted this thing to go!  Hey, they have the money, so why not? The couple lives in LA, and were ranked #191 on the Forbes 2013 list of the world’s richest billionaires.

The institute is divided into three sections:  core member labs, research programs, and platforms.  I know what you are thinking…what’s a platform?  Have no fear!  Platforms, in this sense, are groups of scientists who focus on the technological tools required to conduct research of this nature, in addition to the research on the genome itself.

Within the three sections, the Broad Institute focuses on solutions in cancer programs, medical and population genetics, genome biology and cell circuits programs, chemical biology, metabolism, infectious diseases, psychiatric research, genome sequencing, and epigenomics.

The institute is headed by modern genius Eric Lander, a Cambridge Historical Tours favorite!  Google him, and just check out his sweet mustache!