Stephanie Tang is originally from New Jersey and graduated from Harvard College with an A.B. in Chemical and Physical Biology and a Language Citation in Spanish. On campus, she worked in Christina Woo's lab studying glycosylation regulation and function and was involved with the Asian American Women's Association. She also worked in Richard Lee’s lab at Johns Hopkins University studying the epigenetics of stress and mood disorders. Outside of lab, Stephanie enjoys drawing and painting, swimming, and playing her ukulele.
Postdoctoral fellow Tiki Hayes was recently recognized in Cell Press' Crosstalk as one of “100 more inspiring Black scientists in America.” The article, published in celebration of Juneteenth, contains the names and photos of 100 scientists across many fields, including both established scientists and those developing their careers. Congratulations Tiki!!
As a founding and “current” TCGA project team principal investigator, Matthew Meyerson was honored by two different 2020 American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Team Science Awards presented in June at the AACR Virtual Annual Meeting.
Andy Cherniack, co-principal investigator for the Genome Data Analysis Network of the National Cancer Institute with Rameen Beroukhim, was also awarded the AACR Team Science Award for the “current” TCGA project team, as were lab alumni Adam Bass, Rameen Beroukhim, Gad Getz, Neil Hayes, Alison Taylor, and Roel Verhaak.
This award recognizes and honors the extensive collaborative effort put forth to create and develop TCGA, which has become an essential tool in our research to understand and treat cancer. TCGA has led us to fundamental discoveries in cancer and has also helped to establish new standards and methods for managing teams of researchers and policies for genomics data. Read more about the award here.
Congratulations Matthew, Andy, Adam, Rameen, Gaddy, Neil, Alison, and Roel!
Will Gibson is joining us for his postdoctoral fellow research studies, jointly with Stuart Schreiber’s lab, from the Dana-Farber Harvard Cancer Center fellowship program in Medical Oncology. Before his residency in internal medicine at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Will was a student with Rameen Beroukhim in the Harvard-MIT MD/PhD program. Large-scale cancer sequencing studies have revealed a small number of frequently altered genes and a much larger number of infrequently altered cancer genes. A large fraction of drug-development effort has been focused on less-frequently altered, but more druggable cancer genes such as kinases. Will hopes to refocus on some of the "Mountains" in cancer genome landscapes by leveraging new insights and technologies from chemical biology.
Joseph McGaunn is joining the Meyerson Laboratory as a Research Associate with Xiaoyun Wu. Joseph is a Boston local who attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he worked in the lab of Dr. Alexander Suvorov investigating potential molecular mechanisms by which environmental toxicants increase complex disease risk for exposed individuals and their offspring. Joseph also worked in the Nichols Lab at New England Biolabs developing DNA amplification products and at Harvard Life Science Outreach developing teaching labs and assisting in science education workshops. Beyond finding treatments for cancers, Joseph is also passionate about science education, communication, and policy. When not in the lab he can be found going on walks, volunteering for different causes, working on a podcast, reading a book, or spending time with friends and family.
Welcome to the laboratory, Will and Joseph!
Sejal Jain joined us from Duke, bringing her expertise to take on the challenging project of making human primary basal organoids with Alison Taylor. Sejal also worked with Elizabeth Stover on a study of anti-apoptotic proteins in ovarian cancer. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Sejal worked with Mike Slevin on SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics and acted as the project manager for the Brigham/MGH COVID-19 Diagnostics Validation group, making significant contributions to each.
Sejal departs the Meyerson lab to attend medical school at the University of South Florida. We wish her all the best!
Lauren Kagaler is joining the Meyerson laboratory as a research associate with Elisa Aquilanti. Lauren grew up in Zimbabwe and attended Dickinson College where she worked in Michael Roberts’ laboratory on a project aimed at understanding the role of EGR1 in reprogramming of human leukemia stem cells. She also worked at Loyola University on optimizing transaminase reactions that form amines in order to reduce waste. When she is not in lab, Lauren enjoys spending as much time outdoors as possible and loves hiking, backpacking, camping, and running.
Welcome to Boston, Lauren!
Welcome to Hersh Gupta, our new associate computational biologist, and Blake Sanders, our new post-doctoral fellow! Hersh graduated from Brown with an A.B. in computational biology and chemistry. He will be working with Yvonne Li and Andy Cherniack on clinical sequencing analysis projects, done in conjunction with physicians and scientists across DFCI. Blake recently defended his PhD thesis at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, in the laboratory of Dan Slade. Blake brings great experience in microbiology to our project on the colorectal cancer microbiome as part of the Cancer Research UK Grand Challenge.
Welcome to the laboratory, Hersh and Blake!
After graduating with a B.Sc. from the University of Puerto Rico, Maria joined the Broad Institute’s Biological Samples Platform in 2011. While in our lab, Maria has made contributions to a broad array of projects including discoveries of chemo-resistance in ovarian cancer and biomarker discovery for the KAT6A project. Maria is joining Merck as a Scientist in the Discovery Oncology Functional Genomics group under the direct supervision of a former Broadie, Elsa Krall. We look forward to hearing of the discoveries that Maria and her team will make in this very exciting new role!
Lindsay joined our team after completing a B.S. in Computer Science and Molecular Biology at MIT. Lindsay worked with Andrew Cherniack for two years on numerous computational projects for the Bayer collaboration and as part of the Genomic Data Analysis Network. Lindsay is leaving our lab to teach underserved junior high school students in Richmond, California as part of Teach for America. We wish Lindsay all the best in her future endeavors!
Carrot-Zhang et al. studied the effects of ancestry on mutation rates, DNA methylation, and mRNA and miRNA expression. Using 10,678 patients across 33 cancer types from The Cancer Genome Atlas, they determined that ancestry effects occur in a tissue-specific manner. They also identified that FBXW7, VHL, and PBRM1 cancer mutation rates differ by ancestry. This work reveals the importance of accounting for ancestry as a potential confounder in understanding cancer and potential treatments.