Research Branches

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The National Cancer Institute

Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch

Two dogs - Microarray - Red cells

Investigators in the Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch (CGCGB) seek to identify and study genes that contribute to cancer susceptibility and progression. They focus on inherited and somatic (body cell) mutations that contribute to cancer susceptibility syndromes and to the development of various aggressive cancers, including prostate, endometrial, bladder, lung, head and neck, and gastric cancers. They also study the relationship between genetic variation and cancer progression and pursue the discovery of both inherited and somatic variants that lead, specifically, to fast-growing and aggressive tumors.

Formation or production of tumors-tumorigenesis-can result from genomic alterations that are inherited or alterations that are acquired and accumulate over time. Some of these genomic changes drive tumor initiation, growth and metastases, while others are simply passenger events. CGCGB investigators use state-of-the-art sequencing methodologies to uncover genomic alterations that drive tumorigenesis. They search for causal sequence variants in DNA from inherited cells of at-risk individuals, in human tumor genomes and in the genomes of model organisms such as the dog, which is genetically susceptible to many of the same forms of cancer as humans. Branch investigators develop and implement new technologies and bioinformatics tools for genome analysis that are integral to this discovery pipeline. In aggregate, their studies have the potential to contribute to improved patient treatment, survival and well-being.

Cancer Genomics Unit of the Cancer Genetics Branch New
Settara C. Chandrasekharappa, Ph.D.

The Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch Mission

Senior Investigators

Daphne W. Bell, Ph.D.
Investigator, Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch
Head, Reproductive Cancer Genetics Section

Elaine A. Ostrander, Ph.D.
Chief and Senior Investigator, Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch
NIH Distinguished Investigator
Head, Comparative Genetics Section

Harold E. Varmus, M.D.
Senior Investigator, Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch
Head, Cancer Biology and Genetics Section

Associate Investigators

Settara C. Chandrasekharappa, Ph.D.
Associate Investigator, Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch
Head, Cancer Genomics Unit
Head, Genomics Core

Jim Mullikin, Ph.D.
Associate Investigator, Cancer Genetics and Comparative Genomics Branch
Comparative Genomics Analysis Unit
Director, NIH Intramural Sequencing Center (NISC)

Adjunct Investigators

Paul S. Meltzer, M.D., Ph.D.
Chief, Genetics Branch Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute

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Last Updated: November 14, 2014