This research focuses on understanding the genetic changes that cause cancers to form. At the basic level, these researchers use genetically engineered mice to perform random mutagenesis screens to uncover novel drivers of cancer, including drivers of ovarian, lung, and colorectal cancer. At a translational level they are using the findings from their studies and from human studies to understand how the genes they have discovered actually contribute to the cancer phenotype. They are also using whole-genome and transcriptome assays, such as RNA-seq, to predict which patients will survive and which patients will not respond to traditional chemotherapies. Finally, they are using advanced genetic techniques to create pre-clinical models that can be used to test combinations of targeted therapies, in order to bring these combinations to human clinical trials in a more efficacious manner.
This work was featured on the MSI website in September 2015: Changes in the Human Gut Microbiome Caused by Colorectal Cancer.