Toward a Common Coordinate Framework for the Human Body

Jennifer E. Rood, Tim Stuart, Shila Ghazanfar, Tommaso Biancalani, Eyal Fisher, Andrew Butler, Anna Hupalowska, Leslie Gaffney, William Mauck, Gökçen Eraslan, John C. Marioni, Aviv Regev, Rahul Satija

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Understanding the genetic and molecular drivers of phenotypic heterogeneity across individuals is central to biology. As new technologies enable fine-grained and spatially resolved molecular profiling, we need new computational approaches to integrate data from the same organ across different individuals into a consistent reference and to construct maps of molecular and cellular organization at histological and anatomical scales. Here, we review previous efforts and discuss challenges involved in establishing such a common coordinate framework, the underlying map of tissues and organs. We focus on strategies to handle anatomical variation across individuals and highlight the need for new technologies and analytical methods spanning multiple hierarchical scales of spatial resolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1455-1467
Number of pages13
Issue number7
StatePublished - Dec 12 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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