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Jonathan Chernoff, MD, PhD, Receives Grant to Investigate RAC1-Mutant Melanoma


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Jonathan Chernoff, MD, PhD

Jonathan Chernoff, MD, PhD

Jonathan Chernoff, MD, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer and Stanley P. Reimann Chair in Oncology Research at the Fox Chase Cancer Center, has received a grant from the Melanoma Research Foundation to support research on RAC1-mutant melanoma. The grant will provide $200,000 over 2 years.

With this grant, Dr. Chernoff’s laboratory will further investigate two newly discovered genes that cause melanoma in response to sun damage: PREX2 and RAC1. Broadly, the lab studies the process of neoplastic transformation with the goal of uncovering the role of protein phosphorylation in governing fundamental aspects of cancer biology. “The first aim of the research made possible by this grant is to determine how melanoma cells adapt to and eventually evade PAK [p21-actived kinase] inhibitors and then to use the knowledge acquired to cut off the melanoma cell’s ability to escape from such drugs,” Dr. Chernoff explained.

Dr. Chernoff and his team will devise a new mouse model of melanoma by inserting the mutant RAC1 gene into the mouse genome to evaluate the efficacy of antimelanoma drugs such as PAK inhibitors and other agents. 


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