Long-Term Research Interests:
- Use a translational approach to develop improve therapies in breast and ovarian cancers.
Mid-Term Research Interests:
- The role of the insulin-like growth factor (IGF) system in cancer cell growth and resistance to anti-cancer therapies (hormonal, chemotherapy, targeted, etc.)
- The role of crosstalk between the IGF and HER/ErbB (e.g. EGFR, HER2/neu) families of receptors in anti-apoptotic signaling
- Mechanism of resistance to IGF-1 receptor (IGF-1R) inhibitors
- Clinical and translational studies of novel therapies for ovarian and breast cancers
- Targeting minimal residual disease (MRD) in ovarian cancer
My research interests focus on using in vitro and in vivo lab-based models to understand the mechanism of resistance to anti-cancer therapies and devise strategies to overcome this resistance. My lab has focused on targeting the insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-1R) in breast and ovarian cancer models. The IGF-1R in these, and other cancers, provides prosurvival and proliferative signaling. Mounting evidence supports signaling through the IGF-1R as a mechanism of resistance to commonly used anti-cancer therapies, such as cytotoxic chemotherapy, hormonal therapies, trastuzumab and radiation. My lab has been focusing on combining agents targeting the IGF-1R with many of these therapies with the goal of translating these findings into clinical trials. For instance, through our work identifying crosstalk between the IGF-1R and HER2, we provided the preclinical rationale for N0733, a Phase II study of capecitabine + lapatinib +/- the anti-IGF-1R monoclonal antibody, IMC-A12 in HER2 + breast cancer patients.