Skip to main content

The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group Announces Allen Discovery Center for Neuroimmune interactions at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Multidisciplinary research center to define, map, and understand the health consequences of interactions between the nervous system and the immune system 

By Peter Kim / Allen Institute

11.09.2023

1 min read

The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group, a division of the Allen Institute, today announced the launch of the Allen Discovery Center (ADC) for Neuroimmune Interactions at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. The research team will comprehensively define and map the interactions between the nervous system and the immune system that take place distant from the brain, such as at the skin, lung, and gut surfaces, and analyze how these interactions relay a variety of sensations back to the brain and regulate organ physiology and tissue immune responses.

Texture Background Image
Our aim is to take an emerging paradigm of mammalian biology, and transform numerous fields of biology and medicine including allergy, autoimmunity, cancer, infection, and metabolism.

“Understanding of the complex cross talk that occurs between peripheral nervous and immune systems will provide this emerging field with an exciting opportunity to change the way we think about physiology at this dynamic interface, both in health and disease,” said Kathy Richmond, Ph.D., M.B.A., Executive Vice President and Director of the Frontiers Group and the Office of Science and Innovation at the Allen Institute.

This Allen Discovery Center is led by Dr. Brian S. Kim of Mount Sinai and Dr. David Artis of Weill Cornell Medicine. Kim and Artis are bringing together a multidisciplinary team enabling cutting-edge analytical technologies from neuroscience and from immunology to be applied in new ways to bridge these fields and to catalyze a collaborative scientific research hub that discovers new biology and advances a new therapeutic paradigm in medicine.

“The goal of the Allen Discovery Center for Neuroimmune Interactions is to exponentially accelerate the frontier of neuroimmunology by bringing together the pioneers who helped shape the emerging field,” said Brian S. Kim, M.D., M.T.R., F.A.A.D., Vice Chair of Research and Professor of Dermatology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and Director of the Mark Lebwohl Center for Neuroinflammation and Sensation at Mount Sinai.

“The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group is unique in its ability to promote high risk, synergistic programs that will enable rapid curation of open science atlases, technologies, and access to this nascent field. By forming this unprecedented partnership in neuroimmunology, our aim is to take an emerging paradigm of mammalian biology, and transform numerous fields of biology and medicine including allergy, autoimmunity, cancer, infection, and metabolism.”

Headshot of David Artis
David Artis, Ph.D., leader of the Allen Discovery Center for Neuroimmune Interactions. Photography by John Abbott.
Headshot of Allen Discovery Center leader Dr. Brian Kim
Brian S. Kim, M.D., M.T.R., F.A.A.D., leader of the Allen Discovery Center for Neuroimmune Interactions.

The Allen Discovery Center for Neuroimmune Interactions is funded at $10 million over four years by the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, with a total potential for $20 million over eight years. The award resulted from an open call for research proposals exploring fundamental paradigm-shifting questions at the intersection of neuroscience and immunology.

“We are delighted to be collaborating with The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group to launch the Allen Discovery Center for Neuroimmune Interactions,” said Dr. David Artis, Director of the Jill Roberts Institute for Research in Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Director of the Friedman Center for Nutrition and Inflammation at Weill Cornell Medicine. “The New York City-based ADC brings together outstanding investigators from Mount Sinai, NYU, Weill Cornell Medicine, and Yale and provides a tremendous opportunity to leverage cutting-edge technologies to provide new insights into how the nervous and immune systems communicate with each other to regulate immunity, inflammation and tissue homeostasis.”

About The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group

The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group, a division of the Allen Institute, is dedicated to exploring the landscape of bioscience to identify and foster ideas that will change the world. The Frontiers Group recommends funding to the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, which then invests through award mechanisms to accelerate our understanding of biology, including: Allen Discovery Centers at partner institutions for leadership-driven, compass-guided research; and Allen Distinguished Investigators for frontier explorations with exceptional creativity and potential impact. The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group was founded in 2016 by the late philanthropist and visionary Paul G. Allen.