Pediatrics (Division of Hematology-Oncology),
Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
- Cancer Genetics
- Cancer Prevention/Epidemiology
- Cancer Cell Biology
Research OverviewMy research program is involved in the areas of pediatric neural tumors, gene expression profiling and genomic aberrations analysis. A large portion of this work focuses on the examination of gene expression profiles and genomic profiles (DNA copy number changes and loss of heterozygosity) of tumors and their use as tools in assessing prognosis of children with neural tumors and understanding the pathogenesis of these disorders.
Our primary aim is to develop gene chip based risk stratification models that can be clinically applicable in children with neuroblastoma, a tumor of the sympathetic nervous system, and medulloblastoma, a common brain tumor. In this approach Affymetrix Exon and SNP arrays are used to identify transcript isoforms and DNA copy number/genotype of tumors. These genetic features will then be used in building prediction models for risk of disease relapse. In other areas, we are investigating genomic aspects of immune and inflammatory mechanisms occurring in the tumor microenvironment that can eradicate, control, and promote tumor growth and progression. This second aim will use the genomic data (data mining) to understand the impact of genomics on immune and inflammatory cells interactions with tumor cells and how these contribute to tumor eradication or progression.