Senior Research Officers
Dr Chantal Magne Nde
Dr Vanessa Cheung
Senior Research Assistant
Zhe (Kimmy) Zhao
Cancer Drug Discovery
About this Laboratory
Current hormone therapies used in the treatment of breast tumours are associated with often serious side-effects. The Cancer Drug Discovery Laboratory is investigating the mechanisms regulating proliferation of breast cancer cells, with particular emphasis on the role of hormones and their effects on gene expression. We hope to translate this research to assist with the development of breast cancer treatments with fewer side-effects, as well as targeted therapies for tumours not responsive to current treatments.
Related to Research Themes
Nuclear receptor pharmacology - Anti-oestrogen therapies, while very successful in the treatment of many breast cancers, are not effective for patients whose tumours do not express the oestrogen receptor. Many patients who do respond to these drugs eventually become resistant to their effects. We are identifying alternative molecules related to the oestrogen receptor that could be exploited as novel breast cancer therapeutics.
Oestrogen regulation in breast cancer - Local oestrogen production within the breast is critically important for breast cancer progression. While the genetic factors that contribute to oestrogen production are fairly well understood, epigenetic factors are much less well studied. Understanding these factors is critical to the development of tissue-specific strategies to inhibit this process.
Novel Determinants of Mammorgraphic Density - High mammographic density is a strong risk factor for breast cancer. It is now well established that the tissue stroma is a key component of this risk. Stromal cells can adapt in response to tissue injury or inflammation, becoming “reactive” to mediate wound healing. This research addresses the hypothesis that targeting cellular mechanisms involved in stromal remodelling could reduce breast cancer proliferation and recurrence.