Investigating the dynamics of interactions between tumor cells and their microenvironment.
Ongoing investigations are following leads from metabolomics and bioenergetics assessments to identify vulnerabilities that can be therapeutically targeted in immune cells within the tumor microenvironment of breast cancer. Work is underway to investigate the impact of the mutually sustaining synergy between tumor and the immune microenvironment and how this promotes the evolution of the malignant phenotype.
Hedgehog signaling in DNA repair
Genomic integrity of rDNA loci is paramount, especially given the appreciation that these sites are open, and hence particularly vulnerable in proliferative and metabolically active cells such as cancer cells. Unrepaired rDNA damage is deleterious, and rapid rDNA repair mitigates the impact of damage thus preserving rRNA synthesis. This gives tumor cells a survival advantage, enabling disease recurrence and metastasis. Ongoing research investigates the role of Hh activity in nucleolar surveillance and RNA Pol I-mediated rRNA synthesis and ribosome biogenesis.
Dr. Lalita Samant’s lab works very closely with Dr. Rajeev Samant, her partner in life and science!