Cell Dynamics Laboratory
The overarching goal of our research program is to understand the cell dynamics in tissue homeostasis, regeneration, and cancer by using genetically engineered mice and organoids with a specific interest in Wnt signaling. Our approaches include single-cell transcriptomics and bioinformatics-driven cell biology and molecular biology. Here is an example of single-cell transcriptomics-based identification of root cells (cells of origin) of mucinous colorectal cancer by analyzing cell lineage trajectories.
Wnt signaling plays a critical role in governing various cellular processes during embryogenesis, organogenesis, and tissue homeostasis. Aberrant activation of Wnt signaling contributes to human diseases including cancer. However, given the crucial roles of Wnt signaling in tissue homeostasis and regeneration, direct targeting of Wnt signaling as a cancer treatment is still challenging. To overcome this, we have focused on identifying and investigating cancer-specific regulators of Wnt signaling. Employing comprehensive approaches including transcriptomics, genomics, and proteomics, we identified several candidate genes potentially modulating Wnt signaling specifically in cancer.
Our studies on several Wnt signaling regulators, including PAF (PCNA-associated factor)/KIAA0101/PCLAF, CRAD/KIAA1211/CRACD (Capping Protein Inhibiting Regulator of Actin Dynamics), TMEM9 (Transmembrane protein 9), and others also evolved into various research projects unveiling molecular and cellular targets for cancer therapy and tissue regeneration.
Photo updated (5/2022)
Congrats to BongJun, KyungPil, and Lana for Professional Development Awards! (4/2022)
As an Assistant Professor, Moon-Jong Kim is starting his lab at Lee Gil Ya Cancer and Diabetes Institute/Gachon University (2/2022)
Lana's presentation at AACR 2022
'CRACD/CRAD loss, an accelerator for gastric cancer development'
KyungPil's presentation at AACR 2022
'Modeling and Dissecting Esophageal Squamous Cell Cancer Initiation'
Lana's invited presentation at DDW 2022
'Modeling of CRACD/CRAD Tumor Suppressor-Associated Gastric Cancer'
Hippo-activated telomerase-expressing cells in pancreatic regeneration
Kyung-Pil received the National Research Foundation fellowship (6/2021).
Welcome, Lana! (1/2021)
How Cells Bypass Quiescence in Cancer
Kim et al. "PAF Remodels the DREAM Complex to Bypass Cell Quiescence and Promote Lung Tumorigenesis"
Molecular Cell (accepted 1/2021)
MD Anderson Cancer Center