The primary objective of our research is to use models to understand cancer cell dynamics, mechanisms of growth, and optimal treatment strategies.
Modeling of chronic myelogenous leukemia
Cancer treatment is complicated by drug resistance, drug efficacy, and relapse. One idea that may explain the high rate of relapse and ineffectiveness of current treatments is the cancer stem cell hypothesis. Here, the cancer mass is maintained by a stem cell hierarchy where cancer stem cells can proliferate or differentiate into tumor cells. Current treatments may be ineffective due to the fact that they only kill tumor cells, leaving the stem cells intact to regenerate the tumor. The goal of this project is to use models to understand chronic myelogenous leukemia, where the existence of cancer stem cells has been shown in vivo.