To understand the molecular mechanisms involved in progression and drug resistance in Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC). Current interest is to identify molecular and patho-physiological vulnerabilities unique to cancer cells that can be used to design diseases specific precision medicine and can overcome drug resistance to first line therapies. Main focus is on cancer specific
Triple Negative Breast cancer (TNBC) is a very heterogeneous, aggressive and metastatic subset of breast malignancy with worse prognosis and shortest disease-free survival rate. Pathologically, TNBC is defined by the lack of hormone receptors (estrogen, ER and progesterone, PR), as well as of human epidermal growth factor receptor2 (HER2) expression, however, it can be further classified into 4-6 distinct molecular subtypes. TNBC accounts for 15-25% of total breast cancers cases detected worldwide, however, recent clinical statistics from different regions of India revealed an excessive burden of TNBC among Indian women (up to a 31% mean prevalence) greatest as compared to any other regions of the world. As obvious targets like ER/PR and HER2 are absent in TNBC, standard clinical management relies mainly on chemotherapeutic agents in neoadjuvant setting or post-resection. Due to high proliferation index TNBC are chemo-sensitive and a fraction of patients (30-45%) does attain initial pathological complete response (pCR). However, several of these cases have early relapse (within 2-5 years post-therapy) with distant metastasis. Moreover, a significant number of patients (>50%) either fail to achieve pCR or have progressed disease during the therapy with metastasis. Management of relapsed chemo-resistant TNBC is extremely challenging and overall prognosis of such patients is often very poor due to limited treatment options, as both choice and response to other therapeutic options (targeted/combination-therapy) are often unpredictable at this stage. Our research laboratory is interested in understanding the molecular, epigenetic and secretome determinants in different subtypes of TNBC tumors that contribute towards the drug resistance to first-line clinical drugs in TNBC Patients.
Our research lab is focused on the critical questions that how different TNBC subtypes attain resistance to therapy and metastasis under treatment and how these molecular events can be intercepted? We use clinically driven sophisticated cellular and animal model systems of TNBC to study transcriptome, proteome, epigenome and secretome landscapes, together with cutting edge high-throughput screening approaches to answer these questions. These studies are expected to unmask several novel drug resistance mechanisms in specific TNBC subtypes and hence, can provide rationales for specific therapeutic strategies to re-sensitize cancer cells to cytotoxic therapies used in clinic. The ultimate goal of our studies will be to discover TNBC subtype specific precision medicine for Indian patients that can overcome drug resistance and minimize disease relapse, and thus, can improve the patient’s outcome and survival after therapy.
Neo-adjuvant chemotherapy is the mainstay treatment for TNBC patients. There has been growing evidences that the… more
The tumor's extracellular environment is increasingly recognized as an important determinant for its progression… more
It has been recently identified that drug-tolerant persister cells are highly resistant to apoptotic cell death,… more
The number of TNBC patients in India is highest in the world. It has been widely seen that the clinical behavior… more
Ph. D JRF
Ph. D JRF
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