Uncovering the Biological Mechanisms of Aggressive Breast Tumors


We study a breast cancer subtype known as
triple negative breast cancer or TNBC. TNBC is considered to be one of the most difficult
to treat forms of breast cancer. About fifty percent of the tumors respond
to the standard of care of treatment and can be cured, but when the tumors cannot be managed
by the existing therapies, they progress to take patients’ lives. We are studying what biological mechanisms
differentiate those tumors that could be cured from those that become deadly, and we like
to use that information to discover new therapeutic strategies. We are tackling our research questions by
using just about all the tools available today, including data science approaches and more
recently immuno-oncology approaches that aim to take advantage of our body’s immune system
to fight off cancer. I believe that cancer research should be carried
out as a team effort and we have better active collaborations, not only among academic labs,
but also with highly trained clinicians here at Northwestern Medicine and pharmaceutical
partners. We are committed to taking potential life-saving
therapies to clinical trials as soon as possible, and I am very excited that Northwestern is
well equipped to help us to achieve our goals.