A major goal of our laboratory is to identify small molecules that inhibit the mutations that we identify in our cancer genomics projects. Starting with known medicinal compounds, we are studying which compounds and modes of delivery might be best for inhibiting glioblastomas and medulloblastomas. Often there are no effective drugs for inhibiting the pathways and mutations we find altered in brain cancers.
Due to this dire need for new and useful drugs, we have started our own small-molecule screening program. We have assembled over 30,000 different pure small molecule compounds in the laboratory, and use these for high-throughput cell based screen. Using cells engineered with cancer-causing mutations and reporter systems that can be adapted to high throughput screens, we have already identified several leads that inhibit genes in the EGFR and AKT pathways. In addition to the small molecule screens we are collaborating with Research Triangle Institute and Mycosynthetix to screen a diverse natural compound library.
Transcription of genes for anti-apoptosis, invasion, growth