Genetron Health Chief Scientific Officer Received AACR Team Science Award

Release time:2014-05-27

Genetron Health Chief Scientific Officer Received AACR Team Science Award

April 6, 2014, San Diego, USA An outstanding interdisciplinary research team with faculties from Duke University, Johns Hopkins University, and the National Cancer Institute received 2014 AACR Team Science Award. Professor Hai Yan, Chief Scientific Officer of Genetron Health, is one of the core members of the team. This award is to recognize their innovative and meritorious science research that has advanced our fundamental knowledge of cancer and accelerated advances in detection, diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of brain cancer.

The team was the first to outline the complete genomic landscapes of glioblastoma subtypes; they reported mutations include sequence changes and copy number variations. Moreover, they successfully extended the application of this study to more than 20 other cancers. In addition to outlining the basic genomics of glioblastoma, they identified several novel genes that were mutated in glioblastoma through unbiased genome-wide sequencing.

A highlight of their discovery was the identification of GLI gene amplification. Further studies revealed its major role in the Hedgehog signaling pathway. Their next critical discovery was a distinct mutation called EGFRvIII, which is a deletion mutant of EGFR that is exclusively found in GBMs. By targeting this mutation, the team developed novel therapeutics for treatment against glioblastoma, one of which is a vaccine. The vaccine is currently in the third phase of clinical trial in several countries.

One of the most significant contributions of the team was that they were the first to identify novel cancer genes through unbiased genome-wide sequencing. The team identified IDH1 and IDH2, both of which show great promises for future therapeutics as drugs designed to target them have already entered phase I clinical trial.

Furthermore, the team has recently discovered mutations in genes (ATRX or TERT) controlling telomere maintenance in both GBMs and lower-grade gliomas. This latest discovery will provide clinicians with a simple tool to classify gliomas based on their genetic differences rather than histopathologic features.

According to AACR, these novel discoveries and major therapeutic breakthroughs will undoubtedly advance cancer diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment; and they will eventually have a great impact on human health.


American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)

American Association for Cancer Research, founded in 1907, is the largest scientific association focused on cancer research, as well as the one with the longest history. It devotes itself into cancer prevention, diagnostics and treatment by facilitating research, education, communication and collaboration in science and medicine.

AACR publishes multiple cancer related international scientific journals, such as Cancer Research, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, and Cancer Immunology Research, etc. It holds annual meetings which attract around 20 thousand attendees every year.

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