I am a Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of Peter Sorger in the Department of Systems Biology and the Laboratory of Systems Pharmacology at Harvard Medical School. The goal of my postgraduate research is to understand the non-genetic mechanisms by which cancer cells adapt and become resistant to targeted drug therapies. By building computational models that integrate multiplex biochemical measurement and single-cell experimental data, I focus on unraveling the contribution of signalling and transcriptional circuits to the insurgency of adaptive resistance, fractional killing and oncogene addiction in cancer cells. My vision is to use such models to predict how cancer cells adapt to the growing arsenal of targeted drugs, eventually guiding the development of novel combinatorial and time-staggered therapeutic strategies.
I received my PhD in Systems Biology from ETH Zurich, Switzerland in 2013 under the supervision of Uwe Sauer. During my PhD, I studied how microbes regulate their metabolism and growth to adapt to changing nutrimental conditions. I developed computational models that integrate network topology and omics datasets to quantify the contribution of regulatory circuits to cellular adaptation. The works from my PhD showed that is possible to precisely predict dynamic cellular adaptations by encoding experimental data into quantitative models of regulatory circuits and cell physiology. These approaches are arguably applicable to the studies of cancer, where there is a fundamental need for understanding how homeostatic regulatory circuits drive resistance to anti-cancer therapies, especially targeted drugs.
Research Fellowship by the Novartis Foundation for Medical-Biological Research