Biomedical Sciences

Cancer and DNA Repair

The Department of Biomedical Sciences is home to the Campus-wide Program in Comparative Cancer Biology, drawing strength from the common molecular etiology of many cancers among humans and animals. Researchers across the campus, and at Weill Cornell Medical College, integrate and interact with clinicians treating both human and animal patients with cancer, providing strong genetic tools with which to address the etiology of a wide range of cancers. For example, one of the newest members of the department, Kristy Richards, focuses on therapeutic strategies for the treatment of both human and canine lymphoma.  Dr. Richards also on the faculty of the Weill-Cornell Medical College and actively sees lymphoma patients in New York City. Robert Weiss, and Alexander Nikitin are interested in understanding cancers of the reproductive tract, breast, liver and lungs, while Andrew White’s research focuses on the genetics and molecular pathology of skin tumors highlighted by studies of skin cancer initiation and progression.  Andrew Yen’s lab has a long-standing interest in molecular and genetic models of myeloid leukemia and the role of retinoids as chemotherapeutic agents.  John Schimenti, Robert Weiss, and Paula Cohen, are all members of the campus-wide R3 group, whose members share common interests in DNA repair, replication and recombination. More specifically, these three labs are actively involved in research to understand mechanisms of DNA repair, focusing on distinct repair pathways and complexes that are known to be important in human cancer, including the DNA mismatch repair pathway, the Fanconi anemia complex, the 9-1-1 complex, and the MCM complex, among others.