The Rodriguez-Bravo Laboratory is part of the Cancer Biology Department at the NCI-designated Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center of Thomas Jefferson University. Our research focuses on the study of genome function and stability regulation mechanisms with special focus on the biological processes regulated by nuclear pores (NPCs) and which can modulate chromatin function and genome integrity. Using aggressive metastatic prostate cancer as a model disease we are trying to define the role of deregulated nucleoporins (Nups) in the aggressiveness of prostate cancer and the contribution of genome instability to cancer cells’ more aggressive phenotypes.
The laboratory is particularly interested in understanding mechanistically the roads leading to chromosomal instability (CIN) and aneuploidy in human cells and study adaptability to decipher consequences for prostate cancer progression and tumor cells’ therapeutic responses.
To address this, we analyze cell cycle checkpoint responses and nuclear pore complex functionality in non-tumor and tumor cell models through a multidisciplinary approach that combines molecular biology, cell biology and genetics with cancer biology, computational analysis followed by preclinical and patient tissue sample validation.
With our background in the cell and molecular biology study of human cell mitosis and the role of nuclear pore complexes in cancer (Rodriguez-Bravo V, et al. Cell 2014), (Rodriguez-Bravo V, et al. Cell 2018) and our contributions to the study of mechanisms of cancer cells resistance to anti-mitotic agents (Cancer Cell 2012), (Cancer Cell 2015) we aim to continue interrogating and deciphering the pathways that fuel tumor cell growth and survival to standard therapy.
Timelapse movie of human cells dividing expressing histone H2B-GFP. Mad1 knock out cells on the right display faster mitotic progression and chromosome segregation errors during anaphase when compared to controls. (Rodriguez-Bravo et al. Cell 2014)