Cancer Precision Medicine

The Cancer Precision Medicine Laboratory employs multi-disciplinary approach involving genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics to characterize molecular alterations associated with various cancers. These alterations provide insights into mechanisms underlying molecular pathogenesis of cancers. They can also serve as biomarkers for identification and stratification of patient sub-groups that can benefit from targeted therapeutic intervention strategies. In addition, the lab works on delineating mechanisms of acquired resistance to kinase inhibitors and devising novel strategies to combat therapeutic resistance.

CURRENT RESEARCH

  • Cancer biomarkers and targets are extremely useful to diagnose and monitor a disease. Most diseases including cancers can be effectively treated if diagnosed early. There is an urgent need for cancer biomarkers for risk assessment, early diagnosis, stratification of patients to determine appropriate therapy and to monitor treatment response. We employ high-throughput methods including genomics and proteomics to identify potential biomarkers and putative targets for various cancers.
  • Drug resistance has limited the efficacy of almost all targeted therapeutic agents used to treat cancers. Our group works on understanding drug resistance mechanisms in cancers by generating drug resistant clones by subjecting cancer cells susceptible for specific targeted therapeutic agents to selection pressure with appropriately chosen drug concentrations. We employ genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics approaches to characterize these resistant clones and understand drug resistance mechanisms. These resistance mechanisms could be targeted to achieve durable responses to cancer therapy.

Staff & Internal Collaborators

External Collaborators

  • Prof. Akhilesh Pandey, Johns Hopkins University
  • Dr. Sekar Seshagiri, Genentech, USA
  • Dr. Aditi Chatterjee, Mitra Biotech, India
  • Dr. Prashant Kumar, Institute of Bioinformatics, India
  • Dr. Keshava Prasad, Yenepoya University, India
  • Dr. Shivashankar H Nagaraj, Queensland University of Technology

We gratefully acknowledge support from the following organisations and funding bodies:

  • National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
  • QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute

STUDENT PROJECTS

Novel approaches to augment immunotherapy response in cancers

Suitable for PhD Students Background: Immunotherapy has revolutionized cancer treatment in the last decade. This is exemplified by the success of checkpoint inhibitors in treating various cancers. T cells mount immune response by recognizing peptide antigens presented by MHC complex on the cell surface. The nature of specific antigens recognized by T cells remains ill […]

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Plasma protein biomarkers to predict immunotherapy response in lung cancers

Suitable for PhD students Background: Immunotherapy has revolutionised cancer treatment in the recent years. It has been successfully used to treat several melanoma and lung cancer patients. It is reasoned that the efficacy of immunotherapy in melanoma and lung cancers is due to high mutation burden which potentially results in high load of cancer neo-antigens […]

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Micropeptides produced by cancer cells and their role in tumorigenesis

Suitable for PhD students Background: For several years, it is known that human genome has ~20,000 protein coding genes. Transcriptome sequencing studies in the past decade have revealed that a large portion of human genome is transcribed. However, most of it is thought to be non-coding. Recent studies have revealed that some of the annotated […]

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