Dr. Justin Drake

Medical School
Twin Cities
Project Title: 
Mechanisms of Prostate Cancer Resistance

This lab focuses on blending basic and translational research approaches to better understand the signaling networks in lethal metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer, and how to more effectively treat patients who are suffering from this disease using rationalized targeted therapies. Previous research from the lab suggests that kinase activation may be a primary mechanism of resistance to current therapies in late stage prostate cancer. Using in vivo primary mouse and human cancer model systems, they investigate what particular kinase signaling pathways are activated that lead to this resistance and how new targeted therapies, such as kinase inhibitors, may perturb these pathways for future clinical utility. In addition, they also employ phosphoproteomics enrichment technologies coupled to quantitative targeted mass spectrometry to identify the activated kinases and pathways in pre-clinical and clinical tumors for development of predictive biomarkers. The results of this research aim to evaluate single liquid or tissue biopsies from metastatic prostate cancer patients for activated kinase signatures that will lead to targeted therapies in real time.

Project Investigators

Dr. Justin Drake
Alec Horrmann
Megan Ludwig
Post-Doctoral Fellow Zoi Sychev
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