Molecular carcinogenesis studies aim to dissect the molecular aspects of cancer initiation and progression and use this information to develop more effective treatments and prevention strategies. Today, molecular mechanisms associated with different cancers are partly being deciphered by functional genomics strategies, leading to translational research-supported novel discoveries of potential therapeutic stratifications designed to counteract or actually reverse such mechanisms. As a molecular carcinogenesis and functional genomics laboratory, we adapt traditional molecular cancer biology and classical biochemical approaches to next generation technologies (e.g. genome engineering and high-throughput functional screening platforms) and aim to implement an ideal research environment for identification and development of targeted cancer therapies. Our ambition is to advance knowledge on carcinogenesis mechanisms and explore drug targets for cancer.RESEARCH INTERESTS
Overall goal is to pursue a research program that utilizes functional genomics approaches and state-of-the-art tools for the understanding and the unraveling of cellular and molecular underpinnings of carcinogenesis and develops effective strategies for the discovery of cancer vulnerabilities, and hence potential future cancer drug targets. In this context, we are interested in the following research themes: (i) understanding why and how non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells become resistant to targeted therapies, (ii) mapping out cancer cell essential genes and dependencies across cancer types using functional genomics screens, (iii) understanding and mining of the molecular mechanisms of cancer cell senescence and identifying novel druggable cellular targets in senescence-resistance.
In order to do so, our lab is adopting the most comprehensive tools and relevant models for the examination of biological pathways and disease pathobiology.
We undertake a wide range of research efforts focused on the following major areas of investigation: (1) identification and characterization of the mechanisms driving cancer; (2) druggable target identification and validation against such mechanisms. The close proximity to basic and translational research for interdisciplinary collaboration is invaluable in the selection and validation of novel cancer drug discovery targets. Our lab is at the center of characterization of cancer-specific vulnerabilities using high-throughput data combined with information on genomic abnormalities in order to increase research opportunities and support improved treatment of such diseases.