Regenerative Medicine Center

Current Research Projects

Current Research ProjectsNew Brain Cancer Stem Cell Research Program

Cancer stem cells are thought to be the root cause of tumor development. Their elimination is critical for effective eradication of tumors in the long term. Neurosciences Vice President Amin Kassam, MD, is building a research program to study these stem cells and develop new technologies to prevent tumor formation.

Under development are new therapeutic viral vectors specifically targeted to the cancer stem cells that cause the initiation of a brain tumor. Preliminary data has shown that viral vectors can produce an 80% control rate for growth of primary brain cancer in animal models. It is expected that the viral vectors will have similar therapeutic benefit in patients with brain cancer.

Senior Scientist, Dr. Chang-Hyuk Kwon is currently researching malignant glioma, which is the most common and aggressive among primary brain tumors. There is no effective treatment for malignant glioma.

Dr. Kwon's current projects include:

  1. Establishment of a brain tumor stem cell bank using patient-derived specimens,
  2. Development of anti-glioma therapies based on redox signaling pathways,
  3. Development of earlier diagnosis for malignant gliomas, and
  4. Molecular mechanism underlying virus-mediated tumorigenicity.