Anders Sejr Hansen awarded prestigious Pew-Stewart Grant for Cancer Research | MIT News

Cortez Deacetis

Anders Sejr Hansen, assistant professor of biological engineering at MIT, has been named a Pew-Stewart Scholar for Cancer Exploration for 2021. The Pew-Stewart Scholars Application for Cancer Analysis is a countrywide initiative developed to assistance promising early-vocation experts whose exploration will accelerate discovery and advance development towards a heal for most cancers.

The Hansen Lab will look into how genetic elements, known as enhancers, command the expression of genes in most cancers. Notably, enhancers can be really much absent from the genes they handle. For illustration, the enhancers that regulate c-Myc, a gene typically expressed in superior amounts in cancer, are amplified in lung and endometrial cancers. On the other hand, it is not effectively understood how acquiring much more copies of the enhancer drives the uptick in c-Myc expression.

Employing a blend of solitary-molecule and tremendous-resolution dwell-mobile imaging strategies and gene-editing applications, the lab will take a look at how prolonged-assortment DNA loops are fashioned to encourage purposeful interactions concerning enhancers and their focus on genes and how that drives their gene expression. This function will deliver visual and genuine-time affirmation on how enhancers converse with faraway genes and finally recognize new therapeutic methods to handle cancers driven by the overexpression of c-Myc.

“We are thrilled to get this reward and honored to come to be a portion of the Pew-Stewart Students in Most cancers Analysis Program” states Hansen. “With the aid of the Pew-Stewart Plan, we will acquire new super-resolution microscopy tactics to abide by how enhancers communicate with oncogenes within dwelling cells at unparalleled spatiotemporal precision. Ultimately, we hope to use this new platform to comprehend the molecular mechanisms, and to detect molecular Achilles’ heels that we can concentrate on therapeutically in cancer”

Hansen joined MIT as an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Engineering in early 2020. He obtained his undergraduate and master’s degrees in chemistry at Oxford University in 2010 and obtained his PhD in chemistry and chemical biology from Harvard University in 2015. He worked with Erin O’Shea, applying devices biology methods to recognize how cells can encode and transmit information in the dynamics of transcription component activation. For his postdoc at the College of California at Berkeley with Robert Tjian and Xavier Darzacq, Anders designed new imaging ways for dissecting the dynamics of 3D genome organization with single-molecule resolution in dwelling cells. 

In line with The Alexander and Margaret Stewart Trust’s mission to spend in revolutionary, cutting-edge cancer investigate that may speed up and advance development toward a overcome for most cancers, applications are from nominees conducting cancer study. The Pew-Stewart Students Application for Cancer Study is unique from the Pew Scholars Software. It follows a different but parallel established of pointers and techniques for nominating an applicant whose investigation is similar to most cancers. The award offers $300,000 in flexible help — $75,000 per year for four years.

Before this calendar year, Anders was also awarded a grant from The G. Harold and Leila Y. Mathers Charitable Foundation to figure out innovative translational exploration.

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