Every functional process in our body is mediated by highly orchestrated cellular crosstalk. The bone marrow microenvironment maintains all hematopoietic cells, including stem cells (HSCs) and progenitors, though cell-cell interactions and secretion of soluble factors. The explicit goal of our research program is to delineate the mechanisms that underlie dysregulated HSC-niche crosstalk and target it to halt aberrant hematopoiesis.
In addition to hematopoietic malignancies, many other tumor types including prostate, breast and lung metastasize to and seek refuge from chemotherapy in the bone. Despite considerable advances in therapies targeting these cancers, once tumor cells have metastasized to the bone, they are generally untreatable. Our goal is to define molecular mechanisms driving bone marrow involvement in malignant processes. Understanding the cell-cell interactions that facilitate bone marrow colonization is an urgent clinical need and will allow for the targeted design of improved therapeutic strategies.
General Research Interests
- Tumor microenvironment
- Stem cell niche
- Targeted therapies for hematologic malignancies