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2018 Fall/Winter Highlights of Hope

  • Text
  • Andel
  • Institute
  • Highlights
  • Scientists
  • Suwyn
  • Michigan
  • Metabolism
  • Duncan
  • Cancers
  • Swaney

RESEARCH STRENGTH

RESEARCH STRENGTH THROUGH DIVERSITY (CONTINUED) DR. HUI SHEN Dr. Hui Shen harnesses the power of Big Data and cutting-edge computational methods to investigate the interaction between genes and their epigenetic control systems in pursuit of new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer. She is particularly interested in women’s cancers, with a focus on ovarian cancer, but is also interested in commonalities shared between different kinds of cancer. DR. PIROSKA SZABÓ Dr. Piroska Szabó studies the flow of hereditary information from parents’ DNA to their offspring, with a focus on the “epigenetic memories” that inform development. Slight alterations to these “memories,” which are manifested as tags that are added to the genetic code, have consequences on health and disease risk that last throughout a person’s lifetime. DR. HONG WEN Epigenetic changes impact how the instructions in our DNA are carried out, making them a key player in cancer development, progression and resistance to treatment. Dr. Hong Wen and her team are working to understand how cancer cells, particularly in pediatric cancers, exploit epigenetic processes to activate genes that cause cancer and to silence those that suppress the development of the disease. Ultimately, they hope to translate their findings into improved medications that correct these processes when they go awry, better treating cancers and enhancing the lives of patients. DR. NING WU Many human diseases, including diabetes, neurodegeneration and cancer, are linked to cellular damage that accrues as we grow older. Dr. Ning Wu aims to find new ways to prevent or slow the onset of such diseases by better understanding how altering one’s diet and, therefore, metabolism may delay the effects of aging. Read more at vai.org/women-in-science, 4 | VAN ANDEL INSTITUTE HIGHLIGHTS OF HOPE

VAN ANDEL INSTITUTE HIGHLIGHTS OF HOPE | 5

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