The Puduvalli Lab is focused on studies related to:
- Epigenetics of brain tumors: Epigenetic modifications are critical to tumor cell biology and have emerged as prognostic markers for patients with low- and high-grade primary brain tumors. Our lab assesses alterations in genome-wide methylation, histone markers and noncoding RNA in the context of tumor biology, tumor-initiating glioma cells and treatment resistance. We are also involved in preclinical assessment of agents that modulate epigenetic processes such as histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors and demethylating agents. The goal is to translate these findings to clinical trials for patients with primary brain tumors. Such studies using histone deacetylase inhibitors have led to clinical trials in patients with glioblastoma.
- Novel therapeutic strategies against brain tumors: Our lab is also focused on identifying molecular pathways of relevance to glioma biology and treatment resistance. In this context, our studies are exploring the role of inhibitors of p21-associated kinases (PAKs), Hsp90 and proteosome to target tumor resistance to conventional treatment and signal transduction agents.
- New models for studies in brain tumors: Our lab uses a combination of cell lines, glioma tumor initiating cells, human glioma organotypic slice cultures and mouse models of brain tumors to examine the biology of brain tumors and therapeutic approaches targeting specific pathways.
Alessandro Canela, MS – visiting scholar
Divya Kesanakurti, PhD – postdoctoral fellow
Prabakaran Nagarajan, PhD – research scientist
Jihong Xu, MD, MS – lab manager