Systems Biology Collaboration Center (SBCC)

Acting Director: Dr. Valerie T. DiVito

Introduction

The SBCC is a distinct office hosted at the US Army Center for Environmental Health Research (USACEHR). It is an enterprise level resource that facilitates systems biology collaborations across the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) and supports data sharing and integration infrastructure for USAMRMC investigators and partnering investigators at other Army, DoD, and extramural organizations.

The SBCC was stood up to conduct activities in accordance with the vision, mission, objectives, and milestones of the Systems Biology Enterprise (SBE). The SBE established within the USAMRMC is the Army's activity designed to build and maintain a competency in medical systems biology science and technology (S&T) and apply these capabilities to all applicable areas of MRMC research and development responsibility, as appropriate. Systems biology is an approach that integrates experimental and clinical Big Data (multi-omics) with computational models that has become the foundation of predictive and personalized medicine. Accordingly, representatives from the SBCC serve on various Steering Committees and Working Groups within the enterprise in support of achieving these efforts. Furthermore, in November of 2018 the SBCC hosted the 'Integrative and Collaborative Biomedical Research for the 21st Century Workshop'. For two days, representatives from laboratories within the USAMRMC, as well as the US Army, Navy, Air Force and other federal agencies, presented on and participated in conversations focused on the newest systems and integrative biology methodologies and related capabilities across the DoD. With nearly 100 attendees, this event served as a precipice for improving awareness and understanding of system and integrative biology capabilities to identify opportunities to leverage technologies in tackling the complexity of Warfighter health and performance.

The SBCC provides guidance and oversight of the SysBioCube, the USAMRMC's integrated data access, management and analysis platform hosted by the National Cancer Institute (NCI)/National Institutes of Health (NIH) via the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNLCR). The SysBioCube was originally developed to support the USAMRMC’s systems biology exemplars aimed at identifying biomarkers for post-traumatic stress disorder and understanding molecular mechanisms underlying coagulopathy (blood clotting) of trauma. To date, the SysBioCube’s tools have permitted the identification of causal relationships of biological networks for these military-relevant diseases and conditions. The SysBioCube is an enabling capability, allowing research teams, composed of intramural and/or extramural investigators across the country, to share and analyze all variations of molecular datasets. With over 50 active users working on seven projects, the SysBioCube continues to serve as a central web portal for data collection, harmonization, integration and mining for US Army and DoD researchers, and their collaborators at academic and private institutions.

The SBCC also serves as the resource for guidance on federal and DoD policies related to biomedical research data sharing, data integrity and data management. For example, SBCC leadership assisted in the preparation of the USAMRMC Command Policy 2017-83, Public Access to the Results of the Department of Defense Intramural Basic Research, signed by MG Holcomb on 8 December 2017, which established USAMRMC policy and responsibilities for access to USAMRMC intramural DoD-sponsored basic research. Moreover, the SysBioCube is a public data sharing platform providing a resource for researchers to be compliant with federal and DoD mandates for data sharing and public access.

WEBSITE LINKS

The SysBioCube:

Federal and DoD Data Sharing Policies:

Policy Publications: