Fundamental research to battle aneuploid cancer

15 February 2016

All cancer therapy is conceived by fundamental research: a scientist in a lab, studying tissues, cells or molecules. The research of ERIBA PI Floris Foijer is a perfect example. He recently received a Dutch Cancer Society (KWF) grant for his research proposal titled “Identifying molecular mechanisms to better treatment of aneuploid cancer.”

Cancer is characterized by rapid cell division. In two out of three cancers mistakes are made during cell division resulting in cancer cells with an incorrect number of chromosomes: aneuploid cells. Aneuploidy is a feature that distinguishes cancerous cells from healthy cells. It could therefore become an excellent candidate for selective therapy.

The KWF grant enables Floris to appoint a postdoc and a PhD to study aneuploidy and it’s effects in state of the art mouse models. By investigating the effect of aneuploidy in different types of tissue and by determining which genes are responsible for the conversion of an aneuploid cell into an aneuploid cancer cell, Floris and his team aim to find leads to new therapeutic strategies that can selectively kill aneuploid cancer cells.

While most of their work will address fundamental questions on aneuploidy, they will actively work towards translating their findings into the clinic. An interesting challenge, and one that you could become part of: keep an eye on our website for upcoming postdoc and PhD vacancies in Floris’ research group “Genomic Instability in Development and Disease”.


Image of an aneuploid cell made with a fluorescence microscope
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