Education, Research, Patient Care qd


The Center was founded in 2009 and represents a new, hybrid activity that bridges genetics, genomics, cell biology and clinical investigation. Our primary mission is to develop and implement biological assays to understand genetic variation discovered in patients. We view this effort as critical in the post-genome era and have focused our efforts in four major thematic areas:

  1. acceleration of gene discovery; 
  2. synthesis with clinical investigation with basic experimental biology to facilitate molecular diagnosis and, when possible, treatment; 
  3. generation of experimentally tractable models for entry points into mechanism of disease pathogenesis, and 
  4. generation of in vitro and in vivo assays that can model human disorders and are suitable for medium and high throughout drug screening.

The Center, a department that attempts to bridge the gap between basic science and clinical research, is composed of a group of over 25 researchers and genetic counselors not only from across the country, but also across the world. Our faculty and staff collaborate with many other groups and institutions in an effort to advance and promote scientific research and advancement. We offer researchers a place to bring their new, perhaps unusual ideas and find peers who can analyze them, critique them, and figure ways in which their own research might catalyze discovery in the work of others. Pivoting around the central idea of using broad basic science to assist the management of patients, the Center is investing heavily in the development of tools that can be used to solve problems of clinical significance.

In 2014, as part of Duke’s campus expansion plan, the Center moved to Downtown Durham and resides in the Carmichael Building, a tobacco warehouse that was built in 1926 and has been renovated to state-of-the-art laboratories and office space. The move was part of the continuing revitalization project of downtown Durham and the Center is in the heart of the emerging Durham innovation district.

In 2018, CHDM established its Scientific Culture and Accountability Plan (SCAP) to foster a supportive and inclusive work environment in which the guiding principles of scientific integrity, innovation, open communication, training, career advancement and discovery research can flourish.

If you are interested in learning more or joining the Center team, please visit our Contact page and send us a message. You can also visit our Employment page to find out about opportunities of employment.