Inspiring questions that guide our laboratory

Why do some patients respond to a particular drug while others do not?

How do we use biomarkers to select the right patient for any given therapy?

What are the mechanisms underlying drug sensitivity and resistance?

How do we discover, define, and distinguish between pharmacodynamic, prognostic, and predictive biomarkers?

How can we use biomarkers to develop better, more efficient clinical trials? 

Overview of our research

Our Phase I Biomarker Laboratory brings together clinical, translational, and basic research to pursue the development of novel biomarkers, which are categoried into pharmacodynamic, prognostic, and predictive markers.  Upon validation, these markers help definining mechanisms of sensitivity, resistance, and toxicity to any given therapeutic drug classes.

From 2004 to 2010, we focused on biomarker development for anti-angiogenic agents, with a special interest in bevacizumab.  We optimized a panel of 25 markers that are crucial factors for angiogenesis, vascular activation, and extracellular matrix remodeling, collectively referred to as Angiome.  Angiome analysis has been appliced to thousands of patients, covering multiple disease types including coloreactal, renal, ovarian, prostate, lung cancer, etc. 

Starting from 2014, with the rapid application of immune therapy, we initiated biomarker exploration for immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI)  Currently our main focus is on anti-PD1 (nivolumab, pembrolizumab) and anti-PD-L1 (atezolizumab and durvalumab) agents.