The Gillison laboratory combines the power of molecular biology and epidemiology to study the pathogenesis of human cancers. Our approach is to generate and test hypotheses in human subjects rather than in model systems.
Our laboratory has focused to date on the role of human papillomavirus (HPV) in the pathogenesis of extra genital malignancies. Over the last 10 years, we have established that HPV is an important cause of head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. To gain a thorough understanding of disease pathogenesis, we study the entire spectrum of disease, from risk factors for and natural history of oral HPV infection through to molecular biomarkers predictive of response to chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Our laboratory is extending these approaches to associations between HPV and other extragenital malignancies, as well as to investigate other associations between infectious disease and cancer. Our long-term goal is to identify new approaches to cancer prevention. Our laboratory has multiple ongoing studies with collaborators.