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About the ATLAS-D2K Center | ATLAS-D2K Center

About the ATLAS-D2K Center

In 2022, The NIDDK of NIH funded the creation of an Analysis, Technology, Leadership, Administration and Science (ATLAS) Center with the overarching goal of building the “go-to” open-access resource for the research community of mouse and human renal and genitourinary development and disease.

In the current age of accelerated molecular technology advancements, biomedical research has witnessed important innovations, including cutting-edge techniques like single-cell transcriptomics, 2D/3D imaging technologies, and spatial transcriptomic methods. Simultaneously, we are observing exponential growth in data science technologies, offering novel ways to store, integrate, and analyze vast and diverse datasets. Such technologies, when combined, possess the potential to revolutionize our understanding of developmental processes and disease mechanisms, offering an unparalleled view into tissue organization, cell interactions, and gene regulation.

However, despite these advancements, researchers face significant challenges in efficiently processing, accessing, and analyzing this deluge of data. Such challenges often hinder the exploration of renal and genitourinary biology – areas of immense significance. There is a pronounced gap in bioinformatic and computational tools tailored for users without extensive computational backgrounds, which restricts the full potential of existing datasets.

The ATLAS-D2K Center was formed to bridge this gap.

Our Mission

With the support of NIDDK and in collaboration with renowned research consortia, the ATLAS-D2K Center aims to be the foremost knowledgebase and public resource concentrating on renal and genitourinary development and disease research in both humans and mice. Our goal is to leverage the power of data science to push the boundaries of biomedical discoveries through the following:

  • Comprehensive Data Management: Our platform guarantees a clean, harmonized, and constantly updated database, comprising data from the GUDMAP consortium, the ReBuilding A Kidney (RBK) consortium, and selected external sources.

  • Cutting-Edge Visualization Tools: We are at the forefront of developing advanced tools to visualize and interpret data, creating intuitive 2D/3D molecular atlases and tissue reference maps, providing an all-encompassing view of renal and genitourinary tissues.

  • Accessibility: Recognizing the varied computational experience of our user base, we offer user-friendly bioinformatic and analytical tools designed to democratize data exploration and utilization.

  • Program Coordination: We actively foster collaboration within the GUDMAP and RBK consortia and the broader research community, promoting synergies, reproducibility, and effective data usage.

  • Opportunity Pool: With an aim to bridge research gaps and catalyze new partnerships, our Opportunity Pool funding program stands as a beacon for groundbreaking renal and genitourinary research.

Embodying the essence of flexibility, the ATLAS-D2K Center is ever-evolving, committed to adapting to the ever-changing biomedical research environment, ensuring our stakeholders stay at the forefront of innovation and discovery.

Graphic that depicts how ATLAS-D2K connects with RBK and GUDMAP

This overview graphic depicts the capabilities and connections that ATLAS-D2K provides the GUDMAP and RBK consortiums.

The People


  • Sanjay Jain (Washington University in St. Louis)
  • Todd Valerius (Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard)


  • Philip Blood (Pittsburgh Super Computing Center)
  • Katy Borner (Indiana University)
  • Carl Kesselman (University of Southern California)
  • Jonathan Silverstein (University of Pittsburgh)
  • Matthias Kretzler (University of Michigan)

Key Personnel

  • Jini Bhanushali (Indiana University)
  • Laura Pearlman (University of Southern California)
  • Ellen Quardokus (Indiana University)
  • Lisel (Elizabeth) Record (Indiana University)
  • Hongsuda Tangmunarunkit (University of Southern California)
  • Cris Williams (University of Southern California)
  • Devin Wright (Indiana University)