Research Branches

See Also: Technology Transfer Office On Other Sites: Common Cancer Types
The National Cancer Institute

Cancer Treatment
The National Cancer Institute

Cancer Genetics Branch

Different breeds of dog - Microarray - Red cells

Investigators in the Cancer Genetics Branch (CGB) seek to identify and study genes that contribute to cancer susceptibility and progression. CGB investigators are zeroing in on inherited mutations that contribute to the development of various aggressive cancers, including sarcomas and prostate, breast, and kidney cancers. They also are interested in understanding the relationship between genetic variation and cancer progression and in finding germline variants that lead, specifically, to fast-growing, aggressive tumors.

The susceptibility many types of cancers is largely inherited or results from an accumulation of genetic changes in a number of genes occurring over time. Environmental exposures also may play a significant role. To better elucidate these complex biological processes, CGB investigators are both developing new technologies and exploiting existing methods. They are particularly interested in comparative approaches and have, together with their collaborators, constructed genetic and radiation hybrid maps of the dog genome. These maps have proven invaluable in understanding the genetics of complex disease shared by humans and their pets. Such discoveries have the potential to contribute to the development of new diagnostics and therapies for improving patient survival and well-being.

The Cancer Genetics Branch Mission

Senior Investigators

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

Harold E. Varmus, M.D.
Head, Cancer Biology Section


Daphne W. Bell, Ph.D.
Head, Reproductive Cancer Genetics Section

Nigel Crawford, M.B. Ch.B., Ph.D.
Head, Metastasis Genetics Section

Associate Investigator

Settara C. Chandrasekharappa, Ph.D.
Head, Cancer Genetics Unit

Adjunct Investigators

James Inglese, Ph.D.
Group Leader, Assay Technology Development Group
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS)

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

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Last Updated: February 10, 2014