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Innovative Engine: Medical Research
Columbia University researchers are rewriting the course of scientific investigation, intent on speeding up the process of discovery that will help patients with cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, and other intractable diagnoses. In cancer, Dr. Andrea Califano decided to turn cancer treatment theory on its head. In a feature published in the College of Physicians & Surgeons’ Annual Report, Dr. Califano’s work in precision cancer medicine is highlighted, along with the work of other Columbia innovators who are having an impact on medical research.
Dr. Cory Abate-Shen Elected an AAAS Fellow
The American Association for the Advancement of Science has elected Dr. Cory Abate-Shen a 2018 Fellow, recognizing her work in the development of innovative mouse models to better understand how basic cellular mechanisms are co-opted in cancer and for her contributions to the field of cancer biology. A leader in genitourinary malignancies, Dr. Abate-Shen is particularly interested in advancing our understanding of the mechanisms and modeling of prostate and bladder tumors. She holds joint appointments in the Departments of Systems Biology, Medicine and Pathology & Cell Biology.
Research News
Novel Method Identifies New Risk Genes for Developmental Disorders
The genetics of developmental disorders, such as congenital heart disease and autism, are highly complex. There are roughly 500 to 1,000 risk genes that can lead to each of these diseases, and to date, only about a few dozen have been identified. Focusing on haploinsufficiency, a key biological mechanism of genetic risk in developmental disorders, Dr. Yufeng Shen has developed a computational method that enables researchers to find new risk genes in these diseases.
Awards and Grants
Columbia Team Awarded New Prostate Cancer Grant for Innovative Precision Cancer Research
The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) has announced more than $5.5 million in research funding to six new 2018 PCF Challenge Award teams, including an interdisciplinary team at Columbia University Irving Medical Center. The Columbia team includes Systems Biology faculty Drs. Michael Shen, Andrea Califano and Cory Abate-Shen, with several leading investigators from the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, the James J. Peters Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Spotlighting Interdisciplinary Research and Young Investigators
Innovative research projects were highlighted at the Department of Systems Biology’s annual retreat at Wave Hill Public Garden and Cultural Center. The retreat, attended by 160 guests, also provided an opportunity for young investigators to showcase their work during a poster competition. Congratulations goes out to this year's research poster winners: Andy Chiang (Vitkup Lab), Huijuan Feng (Zhang Lab) and Hanna Levitin (Sims Lab).