Pollock Lab

The Sarcoma Research Laboratory is a translational investigative environment focusing on soft tissue sarcoma and related malignancies led by Raphael Pollock, MD, PhD. The laboratory research agenda is organized around studies of soft tissue sarcoma histologic subtypes. Investigations include:

  • Autophagy in genetically complex soft tissue sarcoma
  • Circulating miRNA in soft tissue sarcoma (collaboration with Carlo Croce, MD)
  • HDAC inhibition in malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors and leiomyosarcoma
  • Dedifferentiation in liposarcoma
  • Genetic determinants of desmoid tumor

These investigations are supported by a comprehensive soft tissue tumor acquisition program in collaboration with Hans Iwenofu, MD, of the Department of Pathology and Thomas Scharschmidt, MD, and Joel Mayerson, MD, of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. The retrieved tissues are used to create cell lines and cell strains; in collaboration with Peter Houghton, PhD, at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, these tissues are also implanted in vivo to establish small-animal models that support preclinical therapy investigations.

Active Grants

Desmoid Tumor Research Foundation

Reactivating apoptosis: a potential therapeutic target for desmoid tumors with CTNNB1 S45F mutation
December 1, 2015 – November 30, 2016

National Cancer Institute

July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2017

CCC Members

Raphael Pollock, MD, PhD

Dr. Pollock is a member of the Translational Therapeutics team at OSUCCC – James, where his focuses his research on soft-tissue sarcoma, a rare cancer in adults but prevalent in children. The laboratory research agenda is organized around studies of soft tissue sarcoma histologic subtypes.

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Anne Strohecker, PhD

Dr. Strohecker is interested in understanding how autophagy, a program that regulates protein and organelle quality control, impacts tumorigenesis. Her projects focus on (i) the identification of novel autophagy regulators and their functional relevance for lung tumorigenesis, and (ii) the role.

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Researchers and Lab Staff

Kara Batte, MS

Kara is the lab manager.

Danielle Braggio, PhD

Danielle is a predoctoral researcher.

Lucia Casadei, PhD

Lucia is a research specialist.

O. Hans Iwenofu, MBBS

Hans is an Associate Professor-Clinical in the Anatomic Pathology Branch and a faculty member of the Division of Bone and Soft Tissue.

Dina Lev, MD

Dina is a consultant.

Gonzalo Lopez, PhD

Gonzalo is a postdoctoral researcher.


Connor Kenney

Connor is an undergraduate lab assistant.

David Koller, MD

David is a surgical resident.

Abeba Zewdu

Abeba is a graduate research associate.


Raphael Pollock, MD, PhD

Raphael Pollock


Dr. Pollock’s clinical practice and laboratory research focus on soft tissue sarcoma, a rare cancer in adults but rather prevalent in children. He has published extensively in peer-reviewed scientific journals on sarcoma surgery and treatment. His externally funded research includes the molecular biology of sarcomas and the development of therapies for these diseases.

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