Dr. Hacohen is an immunologist, geneticist and systems biologist focused on dissecting the basic mechanisms of immunity, developing and applying genetic technologies that accelerate the study of the immune system, and deciphering and treating human diseases -- including cancer and immune disorders -- based on genomic approaches. He is the Director of the Center for Cancer Immunology at MGH. Dr. Hacohen is also a founding member of the Broad Institute's RNAi Consortium -- a public-private partnership that has built genome-wide RNA interference libraries to silence every gene in mice and humans -- and the Immune Circuits Initiative. He is also co-director of the Broad Cell Circuits Program and NHGRI Center for Cell Circuits. These efforts have put genetic perturbation technologies in the hands of the community to address numerous biological and immunological questions.
Projects in the laboratory focus on innate immunity and dendritic cells, as well as technology development, and include: (I) developing methods for network reconstruction of pathogen-sensing pathways in mice and humans, with a focus on viral and bacterial sensing pathways; (II) dissecting how DNA is sensed by the immune system, including the role of nucleases in clearance of self DNA; (III) analyzing mechanisms underlying autoimmunity in lupus patients; (IV) uncovering interactions between tumors and the immune system; (V) testing a new generation of personalized tumor vaccines (together with Dr. Catherine Wu, DFCI).