Hancock - Northeastern University

Principal Investigator: William Hancock, Ph.D., Sc.D.
Institution: Northeastern University, Boston, MA

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The Hancock Tumor Glycomics Laboratory applies an integrated glycoproteomics approach to discover glycan biomarkers for early detection of breast cancer.

This multi-disciplinary team of experts in glycomics, proteomics, informatics, and cancer markers focuses on the analysis and identification of glycoproteins in plasma and tissue and is developing analytical approaches to identify and characterize changes in the glycan associated with these glycoproteins. Candidate glycoprotein markers will be prioritized based on their elevated levels in both breast tumor tissue and plasma and the occurrence of altered glycosylation. To facilitate subsequent clinical studies, they plan to apply a high-throughput and sensitive glycan assay platform to pre-validate markers in a large sample set.

Another study involves determining the glycan structures of the secreted form of EGFR from A431 cell lines. This research may provide an understanding of glycosylation differences between secreted and plasma membrane forms of cancer-associated signaling molecules, which can be used to develop cancer biomarkers. This group has established collaborations with laboratories at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Indiana University.

In the Media:

"Sweetening The Search For Breast Cancer Biomarkers", Chemical & Engineering News, May 2, 2011