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2017 Annual Report

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Meet Van Andel Research

Meet Van Andel Research Institute’s Principal Investigators (continued) Hui Shen Hui Shen, Ph.D., develops new approaches to cancer prevention, detection and treatment by studying the interaction between genes and their control systems, called epigenetics. Her research focuses on women’s cancers, particularly ovarian cancer, and has shed new light on the underlying mechanisms of other cancer types, including breast, kidney and prostate cancers. She is an assistant professor in the Center for Epigenetics. Piroska Szabó Piroska Szabó, Ph.D., studies the flow of epigenetic information from parents to their offspring, with a focus on how epigenetic markers are remodeled during egg and sperm production and how these markers are rewritten after fertilization. These processes have profound implications on fertility and embryo development. Disturbances in epigenetic remodeling are thought to contribute to disease conditions lasting well into adulthood. Szabó is an associate professor in the Center for Epigenetics. Tim Triche As a statistician and computational biologist with an interest in clonal evolution and cancers of the blood, Tim Triche Jr.'s, Ph.D., work focuses on wedding data-intensive molecular phenotyping to adaptive clinical trial designs, in an effort to accelerate the pace of drug targeting and development in rare or refractory diseases. Triche is an assistant professor in the Center for Epigenetics. Center for Neurodegenerative Science Research areas: Parkinson’s disease, depression/ suicide, aging, prion disease, Alzheimer’s disease and neuroepigenetics Lena Brundin As a psychiatrist and a scientist, Lena Brundin, M.D., Ph.D., seeks ways to diagnose and treat depression and suicidality by studying inflammation of the nervous system. Her findings may lead to earlier interventions for depressive patients and for the development of a new class of antidepressants that targets the immune system. She also investigates how inflammatory mechanisms can damage nerve cells in Parkinson’s disease. She is an associate professor in the Center for Neurodegenerative Science. Gerhard Coetzee Gerhard Coetzee, Ph.D., searches the human genome for minuscule changes that contribute to the onset, progression and drug resistance of many diseases, including cancer, Parkinson’s and rare and heritable disorders. His team deploys genome sequencing technologies and high-powered computational arrays to tease out patterns and interactions of markers and treatment targets from among the human genome’s more than three billion DNA base pairs. Coetzee is a professor in the Center for Neurodegenerative Science. Jeffrey Kordower Jeffrey Kordower, Ph.D., is an international authority on the onset of Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s diseases, and works to develop new procedures aimed at slowing disease progression or reversing damage to the brain. He holds a primary appointment at Rush University in Chicago and is a Director’s Scholar at VARI, where he focuses on designing preclinical studies and clinical trials to translate these new approaches into meaningful changes for people suffering with movement disorders. 12 | VAN ANDEL INSTITUTE ANNUAL REPORT 2017

RESEARCH Viviane Labrie Viviane Labrie, Ph.D., studies the dynamic interplay between the human genome and its control system — the epigenome — to understand how neurodegenerative diseases start and progress in an effort to develop improved diagnostics and treatments. Labrie’s scientific pursuits have deepened understanding of conditions including Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, schizophrenia and lactose intolerance. She has also developed new methods for epigenome analysis. She is an assistant professor in the Center for Neurodegenerative Science. Jiyan Ma Jiyan Ma, Ph.D., studies abnormal proteins that cause neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson’s disease and prion diseases in humans and animals. His lab has developed new ways to understand how these proteins spread and cause diseases in humans and animals. The lab is also developing new approaches to diagnose and treat these devastating disorders. Ma is a professor in the Center for Neurodegenerative Science. Darren Moore Darren Moore, Ph.D., seeks new diagnostic and treatment approaches for Parkinson’s by investigating the inherited form of the disease, which accounts for 5 to 10 percent of cases. He aims to translate the understanding of these genetic mutations into better treatments and new diagnostic tools for Parkinson’s, both inherited and non-inherited. Discoveries in Moore’s lab routinely elucidate the faulty molecular interactions that transform healthy, functioning neurons into diseased ones. Moore is a professor in the Center for Neurodegenerative Science. An award-winning year In 2017, we celebrated the election of two of our own into prestigious societies, reflecting a lifetime of scientific achievement and reinforcing the Institute’s growing reputation as a home for innovative and impactful research. Dr. Peter Jones Chief Scientific Officer In addition to being awarded a 7-year, .8 million Outstanding Investigator Award from the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Jones was inducted into the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, an elite group that includes more than 250 Nobel laureates and 60 Pulitzer Prize winners. His election comes a year after he was named to the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Stephen Baylin Director’s Scholar, VARI Co-Head of Cancer Biology, Johns Hopkins University Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center In May 2017, Dr. Baylin became the third VARI-affiliated scientist to be elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences, which was founded in 1863 to advise the country on matters of science and technology. He joins Chief Scientific Officer Dr. Peter Jones and Dr. George Vande Woude, the Institute’s founding research director and distinguished scientific fellow, emeritus, among the society's storied ranks. With the elections of Drs. Jones and Baylin, VARI is now home to: 3 members of the National Academy of Sciences 3 members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science 3 fellows of the American Association for Cancer Research 2 members of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences VAN ANDEL INSTITUTE ANNUAL REPORT 2017 | 13

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