- Understanding the molecular basis of aberrant glycosylation and its role in colon cancer development
- Identifying the genetic causes underlying Familial Barrett's esophagus (FBE) and esophageal adenocarcinomas
- Development of RNA-based (coding/non-coding) biomarkers for assessing cancer risk in Barrett's esophagus
Our long-term objective is to elucidate the mechanisms underlying EAC progression, such that reliable biomarkers and targeted therapies can be developed for effective management of this deadly disease. Using innovative RNA sequencing in BE-associated lesions, we discovered novel large intergenic non-coding RNAs (lincRNAs) showing marked and selective inductions in EAC lesions. Additionally, these candidate lincRNAs exhibited nuclear localization, and preliminary functional assessments strongly suggested these lincRNAs to play pro-tumorigenic roles during EAC progression. Project 3 of the BETRNet proposal will test the biomarker feasibility of the candidate lincRNAs across the BE to EAC continuum, and will functionally characterize the oncogenic roles of these candidate lincRNAs in EAC progression.
BETRNet Roles: Co-Principal Investigator, Project 3 PI, Project 1 Co-PI