New Appointments: MBP Welcomes Three New Researchers

Jul 19, 2021

A photo of Dr. Gaiti, Dr. Kumar and Dr. Schwartz(l to r) Dr. Schwartz, Dr. Gaiti and Dr. Kumar
The Department of Medical Biophysics is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Frederico Gaiti, Assistant Professor, Dr. Sushant Kumar, Assistant Professor, and Dr. Gregory Schwartz, Assistant Professor.

Dr. Frederico Gaiti

Dr. Gaiti earned his PhD in evolutionary biology and genomics from the University of Queensland (Australia), where he focused on understanding the evolutionary origin of two major players in human gene regulation: long non-coding RNAs and chromatin marks. Through these studies, he developed a deep interest in understanding how a single normal cell becomes malignant by the accumulation of genetic and non-genetic alterations. This motivated him to pursue a career in biomedical research, to understand the underpinnings of evolutionary plasticity of cancer. As a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Dan Landau’s laboratory at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York Genome Center, he made contributions to the cancer genomics and computational oncology fields by examining the epigenetic dimension of cancer evolution, using chronic lymphocytic leukemia and human gliomas as models. Dr. Gaiti is now developing and applying computational and experimental single-cell genomics and epigenomics methodologies to answer the fundamental question of how malignant cellular states in cancer are jointly determined by genetic and epigenetic alterations. Dr. Gaiti is committed to a career in basic cancer research with translational impact, making discoveries that would offer improved therapeutic options to directly address cancer evolution.

Dr. Gaiti’s lab will be located at the Princess Margaret Cancer Research Tower.

Dr. Sushant Kumar

Dr. Kumar is interested in developing computational methods and tools to obtain molecular- and genetic-level insight into cancer biology. His lab will utilize genomics, machine learning, and biophysics-based approaches to address these questions. Dr. Kumar completed his Ph.D. in bioinformatics and genomics at the Pennsylvania State University. During his Ph.D., he applied biomolecular simulations and structural bioinformatics approaches to study protein folding and binding processes in disordered proteins. As a postdoctoral associate at Yale, he worked extensively on developing integrative approaches to interpret and prioritize genomic variants associated with various diseases, including cancer.

Dr. Kumar’s lab will be located at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.

Dr. Gregory Schwartz

Dr. Schwartz became interested in heterogeneous systems by studying the diversity and selection of the immune receptor repertoire during his PhD research at Drexel University (2011-2016). He subsequently joined the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania as a postdoctoral researcher, where he studied heterogeneous responses to strong selective pressure in cancer by developing and applying new methods and algorithms to elucidate drug response (2016-2021). He has designed methods including the integration of different data modalities such as transcriptomes and proteomes to discover pan-cancer biomarkers as well as techniques to characterize and quantify new classes of diverse mutations at the nucleotide level in acute myeloid leukemia. More recently, he has leveraged single-cell technologies to deconvolve resistance to targeted therapy in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

Dr. Schwartz’ lab is located at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Gaiti, Dr. Kumar and Dr. Schwartz and to the Department!

May 5 – Sep 1
National Chats for Change: Systems Thinking for Transformational Change
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Careers by Design: Building a Professional Development Blueprint workshops
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2020 Virtual Geneva Park Retreat
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