Katherine Aird, PhD

The Aird Lab studies the bidirectional interplay between cellular metabolism and the cell cycle in cancer. Learn more about the Aird Lab.

Chris Bakkenist, PhD

The Bakkenist Lab studies DNA damage signaling and DNA replication in cancer and immune cells. Learn more about the Bakkenist Lab.

Jeffrey Brodsky, PhD

Dr. Brodsky’s lab studies how cells adapt to the accumulation of toxic proteins, a phenomenon associated with administration of chemotherapeutics. More specifically, they discovered that some cancer cells are ‘re-wired’ to adapt to stress and to drugs that inhibit adaptive responses kill chemotherapy-resistant cancer cells. Learn more about Brodsky Lab.

Yuri Bunimovich, MD, PhD

Dr. Bunimovich’s research focuses on the neuro-immune regulation of cancer progression and the re-engineering of anti-tumor immunity for the development and testing of novel cancer immunotherapies. Learn more about the Bunimovich Lab.

Tullia Bruno, PhD

The Bruno Lab focuses on understanding B cell modulation within and outside of tertiary lymphoid structures (TLS) in patient tissues and physiologically relevant mouse models; we utilize a back translational approach (human to mouse) to understand the mechanisms behind B cell and TLS function in the tumor microenvironment with a combination of cellular and spatial immunology (spectral flow cytometry, multispectral imaging, spatial transcriptomics). Learn more about the Bruno Lab.

Timothy Burns, MD, PhD

Dr. Burns’ research and clinical interests revolve around the development of targeted therapies for oncogene driven NSCLC as well as novel strategies to overcome resistance to targeted therapies in NSCLC. Learn more about Dr. Burns’ work in the Department of Medicine and at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center.

Yuan Chang, MD

Dr. Chang’s research, through the joint laboratory between Patrick Moore and Yuan Chang, is focused on discovering new human cancer viruses and examining viral genes to learn how they contribute to the molecular pathology of cancer. Learn more about the Chang Moore Lab.

Anthony Cillo, PhD

Dr. Cillo’s research leverages wet and dry lab approaches to understand immune cell states, fates and intercellular communication in the tumor microenvironment to better understand immunobiology and identify new therapeutic opportunities for patients with cancer.

Lan Coffman, MD, PhD

Dr. Coffman’s research focuses on understanding how the stromal microenvironment impacts ovarian cancer initiation, growth and spread and to develop new therapies to target the stromal support of ovarian cancer to improve the lives of women at risk for and living with this deadly disease. Learn more about Dr. Coffman’s work.

Greg Delgoffe, PhD

The Delgoffe Lab studies how metabolites shape the function of immune cells, with a focus on immune activity within the tumor microenvironment. Learn more about the Delgoffe Lab.

Wei Du, MD, PhD

Dr. Du’s research is centered on pathophysiology of hematologic diseases such as bone marrow (BM) failure and leukemia. She has been investigating the mechanism of hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) mobilization and BM niche engraftment as well as the factors implicated in cell proliferation and apoptosis. Learn more about Dr. Du’s work.

Robert Ferris, MD, PhD

Dr. Ferris’s research is focused on cellular immune mechanisms of natural killer (NK) cell, dendritic cells (DC) and T lymphocyte activation against head and neck cancer (HNC) tumor antigens. Learn more about Dr. Ferris’s work.

Elise Fouquerel, PhD

The Fouquerel Laboratory is interested in deciphering the roles of DNA-dependent ADP Ribose Transferase enzymes PARPs in the repair of oxidative DNA damage and resolution of secondary DNA structures at telomeres and centromeres. Learn more about the Fouquerel Lab.

Shou-Jiang Gao, PhD

The Gao Lab researches viral oncogenesis with focus on Kaposi’s sarcoma-associate herpesvirus (KSHV) and AIDS-related malignancies. Learn more about the Gao Lab.

Yi-Nan Gong, PhD

The Gong Lab studies the plasma membrane dynamics during cell death and its immune consequences in cancer. Learn more about the Gong Lab.

Haitao Guo, PhD

Dr. Guo’s research is focused on hepatitis B virus (HBV) molecular biology, pathogenesis, antiviral development, and oncogenesis of HBV-related liver cancer. Learn more about Dr. Guo’s work.

Sarah Hainer, PhD

Work in the Hainer lab focuses on how cell fate specification is mediated at the interface of transcription and chromatin dynamics – fundamental mechanisms that shape all aspects of biology including disease states. The Hainer lab focuses on a group of proteins, termed nucleosome remodeling complexes, that alter nucleosome positions within the genome to regulate DNA templated activities. Specifically, the lab has focused on the BAF (Brahama Associated Factors; also referred to as mSWI/SNF) complex, which is mutated in ~23% of all human cancers. Learn more at

Nadine Hempel, PhD

Research in the Hempel Lab focuses on metastasis and tumor progression of ovarian cancer, with a focus on antioxidant enzymes, redox signaling and mitochondrial form and function. Learn more about the Hempel Lab.

Larry Kane, PhD

Dr. Kane’s research focuses on mechanisms that regulate T cell activation and exhaustion, including within the tumor microenvironment. Current projects are investigating the function of two proteins – Tim-3 and Pik3ip1. Learn more about Dr. Kane’s work.

Adrian Lee, PhD

Dr. Lee’s research focuses on systems biology translational research into breast cancer using genomics approaches. Learn more about Dr. Lee’s work.

Jing Li, PhD

Dr. Li’s lab focuses on immune oncology, with a particular focus on regulatory CD8+ T cells. Learn more about Dr. Li’s work.

Renfeng Li, PhD

The Li Lab is focusing on understanding the molecular mechanisms by which viral and host factors control the transition of EBV from latency to reactivation with a goal of developing novel therapeutic strategies to eradicate EBV-associated cancer. Learn more about the Li Lab.

Jianhua Luo, MD, PhD

Dr. Luo’s laboratory is interested in cancer genomics, particularly oncogenic fusion genes and the development of new technologies in high-throughput cancer genome sequencing. Learn more about the Luo Lab.

Tatiana Moiseeva, PhD

Dr. Moiseeva’s lab is interested in deciphering the molecular mechanisms of the initiation of DNA replication in human cancer and non-diseased cells, as well as studying the effects of cancer-associated perturbations in replication proteins on origin firing and cell cycle with the ultimate goal of specifically targeting them in oncology clinic. Learn more about the Moiseeva Lab.

Patrick Moore, MD, MPH

Dr. Moore’s research — a joint laboratory between Patrick Moore and Yuan Chang — is focused on discovering new human cancer viruses and examining viral genes to learn how they contribute to the molecular pathology of cancer. Learn more about Dr. Moore’s work.

Ben Nacev, MD, PhD

The goal of the Nacev Lab is to understand how epigenetic dysregulation promotes cancer growth and to leverage this understanding to advance new therapeutic approaches in the clinic. Learn more about the Nacev Lab

Yael Nechemia-Arbely, PhD

Dr. Nechemia-Arbely’s lab studies mechanisms of epigenetic assembly, maintenance, and propagation of human centromeres that are essential for faithful chromosome segregation during mitosis. Learn more about the Nechemia-Arbely Lab.

Jessie Nedrow, PhD

Dr. Nedrow’s research focus is on the development of novel radiopharmaceuticals for molecular imaging and targeted radiopharmaceutical therapy for a variety of cancers. Learn more about the Nedrow Lab.

Carola Neumann, MD

Roddy O’Sullivan, PhD

Steffi Oesterreich, PhD

Patricia Opresko, PhD

The Opresko Lab studies how genetic and environmental factors, including oxidative stress, cause telomere instability, and roles for telomere maintenance in genome preservation, cancer and aging. Learn more about the Opresko Lab.

Hatice Osmanbeyoglu, PhD

Dr. Osmanbeyogly’s lab primary focuses on developing integrative machine learning approaches for extracting therapeutic and biological insights from highly heterogeneous omic datasets, clinical and drug response data, with the purpose of advancing precision medicine. Learn more about the Osmanbeyoglu Lab.

Abigail Overacre, PhD

The Overacre Lab seeks to understand the complex relationship between the immune system and the microbiome to determine how this relationship shapes response to cancer immunotherapy in both mouse models and patient samples. Learn more about the Overacre Lab.

Jeremy Rich, MD, MHS, MBA

The goals of the Rich Lab are to identify novel therapeutic paradigms in the treatment of advanced cancers, primarily malignant brain tumors, through the prism of stem cell biology to identify core regulatory pathways amenable to pharmacologic targeting. Learn more about the Rich Lab.

Partha Roy, PhD

The Roy lab is interested in metastatic breast cancer (mechanisms of tumor cell invasion, cancer dormancy, and emergence), kidney cancer (tumor angiogenesis, immune microenvironment regulation, and immunotherapy), small molecule discovery of anti-cancer agents, vascular endothelial-immune cell crosstalk, and lipid signaling. Learn more about the Roy Lab

Nicole Scheff, PhD

The Scheff Lab studies interactions between the peripheral nervous system, cancer cells, and immune cells that can modulate anti-cancer immunity and cancer progression. Learn more about the Scheff Lab.

Kathy Shair, PhD

The Shair lab studies Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-associated cancers, with a special interest in nasopharyngeal carcinoma. Learn more about Dr. Shair’s work.

Wayne Stallaert, PhD

Dr. Stallert uses quantitative imaging approaches to study the mechanisms of tumor proliferation and dormancy. Learn more about Dr. Stallaert’s work.

Shikhar Uttam, PhD

Dr. Uttam’s lab uses multi-scale spatial systems biology approaches to study the heterocellular complexity of tumor microenvironments. Learn more about the Uttam Lab.

Dario Vignali, PhD

Dr. Vignali’s research focuses on gaining a better understanding of the inhibitory mechanisms, including inhibitory receptors and regulatory T cells, that limit anti-tumor immunity by using a combination of systems immunology approaches, sophisticated mouse models and samples from cancer patients. Learn more about the Vignali Lab.

Jing Hong Wang, MD, PhD

The goals of Wang Lab research program include: (1) define the cellular and molecular mechanisms of immune evasion during cancer development; (2) develop more effective cancer immunotherapy, with a focus on head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCCs) and B cell lymphomas; (3) elucidate the basic mechanisms of antibody gene diversification and B cell lymphomagenesis. Learn more about Dr. Wang’s work.

Ioannis Zervantonakis, PhD

The Zervantonakis Lab employs a bioengineering approach that integrates microfluidics, systems biology modeling and in vivo experiments to investigate the role of complex microenvironments on cell growth, migration, and response to therapeutic stress in ovarian and breast cancer. Learn more about Dr. Zervantonakis’s Lab

Sophia Cosentino Pezzuti

Program Coordinator