Jefferson Institute of Molecular Medicine

The Jefferson Institute of Molecular Medicine (JIMM) is dedicated to the study of the etiology and progression of diseases, with particular focus on acquired and genetic aberrations associated with the extracellular matrix of connective tissues.

The findings are applied to refining molecular screening approaches and developing innovative therapeutic modalities. JIMM investigators are conducting research in the areas of epithelial cancers, disorders of skin blistering, fibrotic diseases, scleroderma, osteoarthritis, and others. They are elucidating the molecular and biological alterations associated with the innate aging process, photodamage, tissue inflammation and repair and regeneration.

JIMM, established in 1986,  is a multi-faceted, inter-disciplinary center, composed of internationally recognized researchers with widely-encompassing expertise in molecular genetics, nucleic acid chemistry, biochemistry and molecular and cell biology. Members of the Institute have joint academic appointments to the Departments of Dermatology and Cutaneous Biology, Medicine, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Pathology, Anatomy and Cell Biology, Cancer Biology and the Kimmel Cancer Center.

JIMM's investigators are actively engaged in the elucidation of genetic mutations responsible for heritable diseases, including keratinization disorders, blistering skin conditions, osteoarthritis and collagen and elastin disorders. The Institute serves as a global site for DNA-based prenatal testing for heritable blistering skin diseases, performed in the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) certified Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory.

Other important areas of research involve the regulation of oncogene expression in epithelial cancers, intracellular signaling critical for tissue repair, photoaging and cytokine modulation of the production of extracellular matrix proteins. A large group of scientists is involved in developing novel strategies to provide optimal gene delivery to target tissues and organs, approaches that will facilitate phenotypic reversal in patients with genetic disorders. The recent establishment of the Joan and Joel Rosenbloom Research Center for Fibrotic Diseases with the Institute expands its mission towards translated research through collaborative interactions with several clinical departments at Jefferson, including Medicine, Surgery, Urology, Radiation Oncology and Otolarynology.

Transgenic models of human diseases are also being developed to serve as test systems for gene therapy. This work is fundamental to developing future therapies for clinical application.

Jefferson Institute of Molecular Medicine is located in a state-of-the-art facility in the Bluemle Life Sciences Building on the Center City campus of Thomas Jefferson University. The Institute maintains active collaboration with the prestigious Kimmel Cancer Center and internationally-renowned Jefferson Center for International Dermatology.

Members of the Institute are funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health and from private foundations, as well as by corporate support. Scientific publications of research findings in leading peer reviewed journals by JIMM investigators number close to a hundred annually.

The principal investigators of our Institute represent a multi-national force of industrious, talented workers, many of whom are internationally renowned for innovative technological advancements in basic research. JIMM's research leaders come from various parts of the world, including Europe, South America and Asia. The Institute is staffed by post- and pre-doctoral fellows, many of whom are also multi-national. The educational and scientific challenges, as well as the cultural enrichment of this special academic center, provide a unique place for the active exchange of ideas.

Together, Jefferson Institute of Molecular Medicine's leading researchers and staff at Thomas Jefferson University are actively engaged in groundbreaking work that bridges fundamental discoveries from the laboratory bench to translational therapies that have important clinical impact for patients worldwide.

The Institute is located in the historic downtown of metropolitan Philadelphia, a city with centers of excellence in science, culture and higher education.