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Ludwig’s Tyler Jacks speaks about mouse models and use of genome-editing tools to hasten discovery in cancer research

Apr 19, 2015

April 19, 2015, Philadelphia – Ludwig MIT researcher Tyler Jacks will deliver an address titled “Engineering the Cancer Genome” during the opening plenary session of the 2015 Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research on insights gleaned from mouse models of cancer.

Jacks is a Daniel K. Ludwig Scholar and member of the Ludwig Center at MIT, as well as director of the Koch Institute. He leads a laboratory that is renowned for its development of genetically engineered mice to model the genesis and progression of tumors. Such experimental models have been a cornerstone of cancer research for the past three decades. They recapitulate, in living tissue, the complex changes within malignant cells and the interactions between those cells and their environment that together influence tumor development.

Jacks will discuss his work modeling lung cancer in mice to illustrate the power of this approach during a session titled “The Genome and Beyond”. He will also describe his laboratory’s use of such models to explore why an immune system that initially sees an incipient tumor becomes blind to the malignancy as it evolves—and highlight new strategies for cancer immunotherapy that have been suggested by this research. Further, Jacks will cover how he and his team have applied the powerful genome-editing tool CRISPR-Cas9 to swiftly and efficiently mutate a number of genes in the lungs and other organs of adult mice. Wider application of these technologies to cancer research should significantly accelerate the pace of discovery.

Jacks’ plenary lecture is slated to start at 9:55 AM today.

About Ludwig Cancer Research

Ludwig Cancer Research is an international collaborative network of acclaimed scientists that has pioneered cancer research and landmark discovery for more than 40 years. Ludwig combines basic science with the ability to translate its discoveries and conduct clinical trials to accelerate the development of new cancer diagnostics and therapies. Since 1971, Ludwig has invested more than $2.5 billion in life-changing science through the not-for-profit Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research and the six U.S.-based Ludwig Centers.