Seminar by Anthony Letai

Anthony Letai, MD, PhD

Associate Professor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA, USA

Mitochondria: cancer’s crystal ball

The Centre for Systems Medicine is pleased to announce the latest speaker in our seminar series.

Dr. Letai’s research aims to bring a detailed, mechanistic understanding of how the BCL-2 family of proteins governs commitment to apoptosis and chemosensitivity in cancer cells to improving and personalizing cancer therapy in patients. He has applied studies across many types of cancers, including lung, breast, ovarian, lymphoma and leukemia.   To this end, he developed a unique tool, BH3 profiling, that measures sensitivity of mitochondria to pro-death signals.  BH3 profiling has proved very useful in understanding and predicting response to chemotherapy in vitro and in the clinic.   Given that many target therapies also utilize the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway to kill cancer cells, he continues to explore ways to utilize BH3 profiling as a predictive biomarker for response to targeted therapies in vitro and in vivo.

Dr. Letai earned his PhD in biochemistry and molecular biology in 1993 and his MD in 1995 from the University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA. He then commenced a fellowship in Hematology and Oncology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and was introduced to apoptosis and BCL-2 family proteins as a post-doctoral researcher in the laboratory of the late Stanley Korsmeyer.

The talk will be held in the Albert Theatre, RCSI on Thursday 08th of November 2012 at 4 pm.