Epigenetic aberrations as key drivers of malignant transformation and clonal evolution
Our group focuses on epigenetic mechanisms of cancer development and therapy resistance. By understanding mechanisms of epigenetic de-regulation in cancer, we are seeking to develop new biomarkers and therapeutic strategies to interfere with the malignant process. Furthermore, we have recently uncovered that epigenetic readers (e.g. the bromodomain protein BRD4) are closely linked to the cellular stress response and the splicing process under stress, both mechanisms which are significantly de-regulated in cancer. We use a broad spectrum of molecular biology, biochemistry, genomic and epigenomic technologies to gain insight into mechanisms of epigenetic deregulation. Epigenetic alterations are early events during malignant transformation, thus understanding and possibly disrupting these mechanisms opens up new means to fight the battle against cancer.