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Comprehensive pharmacogenomic characterization of gastric cancer
Gastric cancer is among the most lethal human malignancies. Previous studies have identified potential genetic alterations that can be used as therapeutic targets in gastric cancer treatment. However, several challenges prevent clinical success of current targeted therapy. Notably, gastric cancer has multiple genetic alterations, making it difficult to decide which target is the most ideal choice.
Therefore, According to the team’s study led by Professor Jason Kyungha Sa of Cancer genomics / Biomedical Science department, Korea University College of Medicine, we generated patient-derived tumor cell models that have been tested with 60 different anticancer drugs and performed genetic analysis to explore gene-drug associations. Interestingly, we identified tumor-type specific drug sensitivity based on histological, pathological, and genetic classifications. For example, diffuse-type gastric tumors were more sensitive to VEGFR pathway targeting drugs, while signet ring-type gastric tumors were more sensitive to EGFR pathway targeting drugs.
We also found that tumors with ALK mutation could potential be more sensitive to WNT pathway targeting drugs. We also discovered that tumors with PIK3CA mutation, specifically with E542K amino acid change, were significantly more sensitive to AK targeting drug, AZD5363. Lastly, we found that RNF11 gene was significantly associated with drug response to EGFR pathway targeting drug, gefitinib. Collectively, our results show possibility of precision medical treatment through combining high-throughput drug screening with genetic analysis.
A Team Led by Professor Sungeun Kim of Department of Nuclear Medicine Proposed a New Prognosis Predictive Model for Breast Cancer
Investigates Visceral Fat Metabolic Activity and its Correlation with Axillary Lymph Node Metastasis in Postmenopausal Breast Cancer Patients
Successfully Sequenced the Genome of the Virus with Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) in BSL-3
A breakthrough for the Identification of the Basic Mechanism of the Virus, Drug-Repurposing, Diagnostics Technology, Development of Treatment and Vaccine
A team led by Prof. Park Man-Seong and Kim Jin Il from the Institute for Viral Diseases (Director of the institute Song Ki-Jun) of the Department of Microbiology of Korea University College of Medicine successfully isolated the viruses from COVID-19 clinical specimens and obtained their viral whole-genome sequences.
COVID-19 has spread to the world in just 3 months since it was first reported as “pneumonia of unknown cause” in Wuhan, China in the late last year. As of April 3, 2020, more than 45,000 deaths were reported with a 5.08% case-fatality rate of approximately 900 thousand confirmed cases.
A novel coronavirus similar to SARS coronavirus (SARS-CoV; hence, a novel coronavirus was named as SARS-CoV-2) was identified as a source of infection and it is believed that it originated from bats, like SARS-CoV. Since the 2015 MERS outbreak in Korea, the importance of establishing a risk assessment system for zoonotic viruses has been steadily rising.
The team lead by Prof. Park Man-Seong and Kim Jin Il, accordingly, has analyzed MERS coronavirus and other various respiratory viruses’ biological characteristics, such as viral transmissibility, pathogenicity, and immunogenicity, and researched viral evolution for years. Based on the previous work, the team successfully isolated SARS-CoV-2 strains from patients’ respiratory specimens, completed a whole-genome sequencing of the viruses using an optimized high-performance Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) method, and shared the sequences on Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data under the names “BetaCoV/South Korea/KUMC01/2020, BetaCoV/South Korea/KUMC02/2020.”
The results of the research can provide necessary information for the identification of the basic mechanism of SARS-CoV-2, drug-repurposing, diagnostics technology, and development of treatment and vaccine. Analysis of genome-based evolution can also play a major role in providing a scientific basis for analyzing the domestic trend of SARS-CoV-2 transmission.
The research provides the impetus to future research cooperation at home and abroad on high pathogenicity pathogen as it was conducted in Biosafety Level-3 (BSL-3) lab, Center for Biosafety's specialized research facility in Korea University College of Medicine.