Mechanisms of Oncogenesis (MOO)

Mission

The mission of the Mechanisms of Oncogenesis (MOO) program is to define the molecular pathways by which normal cells transform to neoplasia in order to identify new methods of cancer prevention and treatment.

Aims

  • Elucidate the origins of neoplastic genomic and epigenomic instability

  • Define the role of regulatory RNAs in oncogenisis

  • Illuminate the aberrant cell signaling pathways leading to neoplastic transformation

Program Leader

Robert A. Hromas, M.D., FACP

Robert A. Hromas, M.D., FACP, is chair and professor of the department of medicine in the UF College of Medicine. Additionally, he leads the UF Health Cancer Center Cancer Genome and Epigenome Integrity research program.

He is a leader in translating research into the discovery of new cancer drugs. A professor and chief of hematology-oncology at UNM, Dr. Hromas also was the deputy director of the UNM Cancer Center, the official cancer center of the state of New Mexico and one of only 66 National Cancer Institute-designated centers in the United States. His background is in molecular genetics and DNA repair. He does drug design in silico, producing and screening cancer drug candidates through computer simulations.

Dr. Hromas recently cloned and characterized several novel DNA repair proteins that play crucial roles in both chemotherapy resistance and in HIV integration. He has created new drugs that target these proteins and is testing them for effectiveness in treating cancers resistant to chemotherapy.

He has published more than 135 research articles, including a recent study in the American Journal of Medicine that the new cancer drug, Gleevec, was being prescribed less often for elderly patients with chronic myeloid leukemia than for younger patients. This finding added to the national debate about age discrimination in cancer treatment.

Dr. Hromas has held more than $8 million in cancer research grants and numerous national medical and scientific leadership positions. He has chaired grant review committees for the National Institutes of Health and for the American Cancer Society. He has served on the Lance Armstrong Foundation Scientific Board and has been elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians. He has won multiple awards, including the Indiana University Board of Regents Teacher of the Year and the New Mexico People Caring Award.

Program Members

Last NameTitleDepartmentCollegeResearch Interest Topics
Baer, Charles F., PhDAssistant ProfessorBiologyLiberal Arts & Sciences
Bennett, Richard L., PhDResearch Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunoregulation & Suppression; Leukemia; Post-Transcriptional Gene Regulation; RNA Processing; and Tumor.
Berglund, J. Andy, PhDProfessorNeuroGeneticsMedicineBioinformatics; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Post-Transcriptional; RNA Processing.
Bloom, David C., PhDProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineEpigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gene Therapy; miRNAs Oncolytic Viral Vectors; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions
Brown, Kevin D., PhDAssociate ProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicine
Bungert, Jorg, PhDProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineEpigenetics & Gene Regulation; and Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant.
Concannon, Patrick, PhDProfessorPathology, Immunology & Laboratory MedicineMedicineMedicine
Datta, Susmita, PhDProfessorBiostatisticsPublic Health & Health Professions
Frost, Susan, PhDProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineBreast; Chemotherapy; Environment
Guryanova, Olga, MD, PhDAssistant ProfessorPharmacology & TherapeuticsMedicineCancer genetics; Cancer Susceptibility; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Resistance; Epigenetics & Cancer; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Leukemia; Stem Cell.
Hromas, Robert, MDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineCancer Genetics; DNA Damage & Repair; DNA Recombination; DNA Replication; Drug Resistance; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; and Genetic Determinants of Cancer.
Huang, Shuang, PhDProfessorAnatomy & Cell BiologyMedicineBreast; Cell Signaling Pathways; Drug Design; Drug Resistance; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gynecological; Metastasis; MicroRNAs; and RNA Processing.
Huang, Suming, PhDAssociate ProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineCancer Genetics; Chemotherapy; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Leukemia; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Ishov, Alexander M., PhDAssociate ProfessorAnatomy & Cell BiologyMedicineBreast; Cancer Genetics; Chemotherapy; Epigenetics & Cancer; Functions of Histone Variants in Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer; Chemoresistance in Breast Cancer; Nuclear Structure and Function; Epigenetic Regulation of Gene Expression; Tumor Suppression.
Kaye, Frederic J., MDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineCancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Head & Neck; Lung; and Thoracic Oncology.
Kilberg, Michael S., PhDProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineCell Signaling Pathways; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Leukemia; Liver; and Post-Transcriptional Gene Regulation.
Kladde, Michael P., PhDAssociate ProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineBreast; Cell Signaling Pathways; Epigenetics & Cancer.
Lele, Tanmay P., PhDAssociate ProfessorChemical EngineeringEngineeringAngiogenesis; Breast; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; MicroRNAs; Nanotechnology; RNA Processing.
Li, Chenglong, PhDProfessorMedicinal ChemistryPharmacyCell Signaling Pathways; Drug Design; Drug Resistance; Epigenetics & Cancer; Hematolog Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Neuro-Oncology; Pediatric Oncology; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Liao, Diaqing, PhDAssociate ProfessorAnatomy & Cell BiologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Breast; Cancer Genetics; Cancer Metabolism; Cell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Genital-Urinary/Prostate; Immunoregulation & Suppression; and Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Licht, Jonathan D., MDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineDNA Damage & Repair; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Leukemia; Lymphoma.
Ling, Chen, PhDResearch Assistant ProfessorPediatric ResearchMedicineGene Therapy
Lu, Jianrong, PhDAssociate ProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineAngiogenesis; Apoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Breast; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gene Determinants of Cancer; Metastasis; and Post-Transcriptional Gene Regulation.
Michailidis, George, PhDProfessorInformatics InstitutePublic Health & Health Professions
Opavsky, Rene, PhDAssociate ProfessorAnatomy & Cell BiologyMedicine
Qiu, Yi, PhDAssistant ProfessorAnatomy & Cell BiologyMedicineEpigenetics & Cancer
Renne, Rolf F., PhDProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineCell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Lymphoma; Skin/Melanoma; and Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Srivastava, Arun, BSc, MSc, PhDProfessorPediatric ResearchMedicineHematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Liver; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Terada, Naohiro, MD, PhDProfessorPathologyMedicineAngiogenesis; Cell Signaling Pathways; and Stem Cell.
Tibbetts, Scott, PhDAssociate ProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gener Regulation; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Infection Control; Leukemia; Lymphoma; MicroRNAs; Stem Cell; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Toth, Zsolt, PhDAssistant ProfessorOral BiologyDentistryAngiogenesis; Cancer Genetics; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Immunoregulation & Suppression; Infection Control; Lymphoma; Post-Transcriptional Gene Regulation; RNA Processing; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Wang, Gary P., MD, PhDAssociate ProfessorInfectious DiseaseMedicineBioinformatics; Gene Therapy; Liver
Wu, Lizi, PhDAssociate ProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Breast; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Design; Epigenetics & Cancer; Gynecological; Leukemia; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Xie, Mingyi, PhDAssistant ProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicineBioinformatics; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; MicroRNAs; RNA Processing; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Yang, Thomas P., PhDProfessorBiochemistry & Molecular BiologyMedicine
Zajac-Kaye, Maria, PhDProfessorAnatomy & Cell BiologyMedicineAngiogenesis; Apoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Design; Endocrine; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gene Therapy;
Zhou, Lei, BMed, PhDAssociate ProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Bioinformatics; Cancer Genetics; Epigenetics & Cancer; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Radiation Oncology; Senescence.
Zolotukhin, Sergei, PhDAssociate ProfessorPediatric ResearchMedicine