Grant ID RP190301
Awarded On February 21, 2019
Title Biophysical Mechanisms of Human Microhomology-Mediated End Joining
Program Academic Research
Award Mechanism Individual Investigator
Institution/Organization The University of Texas at Austin
Principal Investigator/Program Director Ilya Finkelstein
Cancer Sites All Sites
Contracted Amount $900,000*

*Pending contract negotiation

Lay Summary

Chromosomal rearrangements and genome instability are both hallmarks of cancer. These rearrangements frequently arise due to activation of a highly error-prone “backup” DNA repair pathway. Microhomology-mediated end-joining (MMEJ) is largely dormant in healthy cells but allows cancer cells to adapt to chemotherapy and loss of primary DNA repair pathways. For example, MMEJ upregulation leads to poor clinical outcomes in estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer and non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), the deadliest cancer nationwide. Because of its importance in aggressive and treatment-resistant cancers, drugs that target MMEJ are a promising avenue for the next generation of cancer therapeuti...

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