Cancer Pathobiology Research

Cancer pathobiology is an integrative discipline seeking insight into molecular and cellular mechanisms responsible for all aspects of cancerous growth. Investigators in the Division of Cancer Pathobiology team up with their colleagues in the Divisions of Cell Pathology, Hematopathology, Genomic Diagnostics, and Oncology use molecular biology, cell biology and biochemical approaches to characterize structural and functional  abnormalities that  drive cancer initiation,  progression, and response to treatment


The most recent efforts of investigators at the Division of Cancer Pathobiology  have resulted in:

  • Identification of  alternative mRNA splicing as a key mechanism driving resistance of B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia to immunotherapy (Thomas-Tikhonenko). Read more about this research.
  • Discovery that the GS3K pathway renders certain types of lymphoma cells resistant to chemotherapy (Thomas-Tikhonenko) .
  • Identification of alternative targets for CDK4/6 inhibitor-resistant hepatocellular carcinoma (Viatour). Read more about this research.
  • Identification of non-cell cycle functions for the E2f family of transcription factors in normal and malignant hematopoiesis (Viatour)
  • Demonstration that APOBEC3 editing enzymes can act at replication forks to damage the cellular genome and cause genome instability (Weitzman)
  • Identification of cellular DNA repair proteins as targets that are manipulated by viral oncoproteins (Weitzman) 

Funding and Recognitions

CD19 Δex2 isoform as a target for alternative therapies in CART-19 resistant pediatric leukemias
Bagashev, Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation

DNA Double Strand Break Mediated Feedback Inhibition of V(D)J Recombination 
Bassing, National Institutes of Health (NIH) 

Targeting alternative splicing of CD19 in relapsed B-ALL 
Black, CURE Childhood Cancer 

Immunogenomics to Create New Therapies for High-Risk Childhood Cancers 
Maris, American Association for Cancer Research

The Myc - miR-17-92 axis in colorectal cancers
Thomas-Tikhonenko, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Resistance to therapy in pediatric cancers 
Thomas-Tikhonenko, Alex's Lemonade Stand

Identifying factors regulating CD19 alternative splicing in pediatric B-ALL
Thomas-Tikhonenko, Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation

Implications of alternative splicing for CAR T-cell therapies for pediatric leukemia
Thomas-Tikhonenko, William Lawrence and Blanche Hughes

Disruption of Pontin/Reptin recruitment by E2F1 as a novel strategy for advanced 
Viatour, American Cancer Society

Targeting E2f1 oncogenic functions in liver cancer 
Viatour, American Cancer Society

Role of DNA damage in the early steps of HSV infection and latency in neurons 
Weitzman, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The human APOBEC3A deaminase - genomic instability and regulation 
Weitzman, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

NINDS Diversity Supplements FP00013952_A1 
Weitzman, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Exploring the oncogenic potential of human APOBEC3 cytosine deaminases 
Weitzman, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Viral Modulation of Genetic Stability 
Weitzman, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Weitzman, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Host proteins interactions with herpesvirus genomes 
Weitzman, US-Israel Binational Science Foundation New