The Sheltzer Lab at Cold Spring Harbor studies the genetic changes that drive cancer progression and cause developmental disabilities. We’re particularly interested in a condition called aneuploidy – a state in which cells gain or lose whole chromosomes. Aneuploidy is found in more than 90% of human tumors and is the most common cause of miscarriage and intellectual disability, but its effects on cell physiology are poorly understood. We apply a variety of complementary technologies, including chromosome engineering, CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenesis, and single cell sequencing, in order to develop new ways to model aneuploidy and to better understand its cellular and organismal consequences.
The genetic alterations that occur during tumorigenesis re-wire the underlying architecture of cancer cells and create certain cancer “dependencies”: genes and pathways that are required for cancer cell growth but that are dispensable in normal tissue. Drugs that inhibit the function of a cancer dependency can serve as potent therapeutic agents. Using CRISPR/Cas9, we are working to identify novel cancer dependencies, and to improve the characterization of the drugs that target them.
The Sheltzer Lab’s new paper on the relationship between aneuploidy and metastasis has been published on bioRxiv.
The Sheltzer Lab is looking to hire postdocs to investigate aneuploidy, the cancer cell cycle, and targeted inhibitors.
Interested applicants should send a CV and cover letter to Dr. Sheltzer.
The Sheltzer Lab’s new paper identifying genetic alterations associated with cancer survival time has been published.