Our research projects focus on molecular understanding of both cancer initiation and progression, as well as how inflammation is a pre-condition to cancer. We are interested in understanding cell death (apoptotic) regulatory networks, and how they rid the body of abnormal or damaged cells. Cancer cells are quite smart and have shut down majority of the cell death signaling networks in order to promote their survival. We would like to investigate ways of re-activating apoptosis in cancer cells to induce cancer cell death.
In addition, we are also interested in understanding the molecular and genetic link between inflammation and cancer. Chronic or abnormal Inflammation is known to exist in 1/3 of all cancers and is predisposition factor. Inflammation is a complex defense mechanism against biological and chemical insults. Although beneficial, persistent inflammation can cause cellular damage. A link between cancer and inflammation has been known for quite some time although we are just beginning to understand the molecular signaling players involved and its the focus of our research group.