Jac Alexander Nickoloff, Ph.D.

Jac Alexander Nickoloff, Ph.D.

Institution: Colorado State University

Project: Targeting Lethal DNA Damage to Lung Cancer Genome Alterations

Grant(s): Lung Cancer Discovery Award

Lung cancer is treated with surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and/or targeted therapeutics. Chemo and radiotherapy are not cancer specific and can harm normal tissue. Targeted therapeutics are cancer-specific, but prone to development of resistance. Our research is designed to develop a novel lung cancer treatment strategy that is both cancer-specific and avoids resistance. We will induce lethal DNA damage in cancer-specific DNA sequences, thus protecting normal tissue. A type of DNA damage called double-strand breaks (DSBs) can kill tumor cells. We will repurpose a gene-editing tool, CRISPR, into a tumor cell killing tool, using lung tumor cell and mouse tumor models. Our goal is to treat lung cancer by introducing poorly repaired or irreparable DSBs into lung cancer-specific genome alterations.

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