Leukaemic Stem Cells
Led by Dr Neil Rodrigues, this research group focusses on understanding and therapeutically targeting leukaemic stem cells in acute myeloid leukaemia.
The five-year survival for patients diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), which is the most common form of adult acute leukaemia, is low, and patient outcomes in AML have not significantly improved in the last two decades. There is therefore an unmet need to bolster the armamentarium in AML.
To this end, the Rodrigues laboratory studies a subset of leukaemic cells in AML - leukaemic stem cells (LSCs) - that are resistant to eradication. They are the root cause of relapse and, as a consequence, they need to be therapeutically targeted to effect cure.
The Rodrigues lab is identifying novel molecular regulators that are critical to the persistence of LSCs, which will ultimately pave the way for the development of LSC targeted therapies in AML.