Improving precision cancer medicine.
Our team at UCSF aims to use the tools of precision medicine to improve the molecular diagnosis and targeted therapy of patients with solid cancers, including lung cancer which is the leading cause of cancer mortality in both men and women in the United States and globally. Our basic and translational research program is focused on obtaining and functionally characterizing the molecular drivers of tumor growth in individual patients. We study patient samples and clinical data to identify novel potential drivers of tumor initiation, progression, and therapy resistance. We functionally annotate the putative molecular drivers using an integrated approach of genetic and pharmacologic tools and methods to identify the key functional drivers of cancer initiation, progression, and drug resistance. This precision approach to understanding the molecular pathogenesis of lung cancer (and other cancers) has led to the discovery of new biomarkers and targets that provide rationale for novel clinical trials that we are launching to improve patient survival. Major recent efforts have identified several rational upfront polytherapy approaches that may enhance response and forestall the onset of targeted therapy resistance in patients, paving the way for new biologically-driven clinical trials.
Our research program has been fortunate to receive support from several sources, including the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award Program, NCI, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Collaborative Innovation Award Program, the American Lung Association, and the Searle, Doris Duke, Kimmel, and Pew Foundations, among others. This generous support has enabled us to address challenges preventing progress towards transforming lung cancer and other solid cancers from lethal diseases into chronic or curable conditions. We welcome anyone interested in joining or supporting our basic and translational research program to contact and visit us.