Clinical Research Division's Dr. Jeffrey Chou is the recipient of the 2009 Colorectal Cancer Coalition Fellows Grant from American Association for Cancer Research in memory of Lisa Dubow.
Chou will study how to make colorectal cancer stem cells more vulnerable to the body’s immune system. He will be working with both cell cultures and mice to see if the drug decitabine will make colorectal cancer stem cells respond to immunotherapy. Chou has identified a protein that is specific to cancer which can be recognized as foreign by the immune system. Once recognized, the cancer/testis antigen NY-ESO-1 elicits a strong immune response that can kill cancer stem cells.
“Results from my proposed studies may potentially provide preclinical data supporting a novel therapy using a combination of decitabine and immunotherapy for metastatic colorectal cancer,” Chou said. “I am honored by and grateful for the generous support provided by AACR, C3: Colorectal Cancer Coalition, and the Lisa Fund, and I would like to thank my mentor Dr. Edus Warren, who has been invaluable in fostering my development as a cancer researcher.”
AACR Fellows Grants are made to young researchers to encourage their scientific work in cancer. Lisa Dubow, who died in 2007, credited her nine years of survival with advanced colorectal cancer to cutting edge research and participation in clinical trials. Before her death she worked with C3 to create the Lisa Fund to focus on better treatment for metastatic disease.