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Associate ProfessorCancer InstituteE-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
The focus of Dr. Gomez's research is on modulating immunity to offset the effects of disease and aging. His ongoing efforts are to develop more effective cancer immunotherapy, particularly immunotherapy of prostate cancer (CaP). One of his projects tests the hypothesis that hypoxically grown cells mimic more closely the antigenic signature of (the naturally hypoxic) tumor cells in situ than do the currently studied cellular vaccines prepared in air. The aim is to characterize the antigenic landscape of hypoxically cultured CaP cells and compare it to that of normoxic CaP cells. Consequently, he is identifying oxygen-tension (ρO2) responsive genes and proteins in CaP cells using transcriptomics, proteomics and immune techniques for detection of tumor-associated antigens in CaP cells.
Dr. Gomez’s findings are validated by studying gene expression also in patient-derived CaP tissue. In another project, the transcripts of hypoxia-regulated genes have been found overexpressed in human primary CaP and human CaP cell lines. Dr Gomez and his team is studying gene expression in correlation with pathological scores and prognosis. Consequently, he has hypothesized that hypoxia-regulated transcript levels can serve as a prognostic factor. He is testing this hypothesis by measuring the levels of hypoxia-controlled transcripts in resected CaP tissues and studying the association with survival.
In addition, in CaP cells, Dr. Gomez’s team is overexpressing selected genes and studying the effects of hypoxia-controlled genes on proliferation, anchorage-dependent and independent growth, and sensitivity to cytotoxic drugs. Validation of hypoxia-controlled genes' role in tumor progression will classify these molecules as a potentially new biomarkers and therapeutic targets.
Dr. Gomez’s research is funded in part by the DoD, PCF and UMMC.
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