Powered By Bing

Shelat Lab: About Us

Welcome to the lab of Anang Shelat, PhD

Shelat Lab Group

Left to Right: Jia Xie, Michele Connelly, Anang Shelat, Jessica Gartrell, and Nancy Martinez. Not pictured: Teneema Kuriakose.

Shelat Research Group

The Shelat lab is focused on three research areas: (a) translational research in pediatric cancer, (b) the development of novel and selective epigenetic drug therapies, (c) targeting the DNA damage response to optimize chemo- and radiation therapy, and (d) multi-scale modeling of biological and chemical data. My lab and I work alongside clinicians, pharmacologists, cancer biologists, and engineers to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in pediatric cancer, with the ultimate goal of translating findings into the clinic. We are actively engaged in several translational project teams working to develop promising therapies for hematological malignancies (AML and MLL), brain tumors (high-grade glioma, medulloblastoma, ependymoma, and atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor), and solid tumors (pediatric sarcomas and extra-CNS rhabdoid tumors). We have contributed to three clinical trial protocols: 5-FU for ependymoma (Collaborative Ependyoma Research Network), gemcitabine/pemetrexed for group 3 (Myc-driven) medulloblastoma (SJMB12, SJCRH), and talazoparib (BMN-673) in combination with irinotecan/temozolomide for Ewings sarcoma (BMNIRN, NCT02392793, SJCRH). Following the launch of the BMNIRN clinical trial at St. Jude, my group has focused on assessing the therapeutic potential of modulators of the DNA damage response (DDR), such as PARP and ATM inhibitors, in pediatric cancer. We implemented several assays to interrogate DDR in the context of drug, ionizing radiation, or both, including classic methods such as the colony forming assay, and more modern approaches such as high-content automated microscopy. Together with Dr. Christopher Tinkle, we are developing rational combination therapies to optimize DNA damaging agents, including radiation therapy. We also developed a research program to investigate the clinical potential of small molecule modifiers of transcription, such as inhibitors of the Bromodomain and extra-terminal (BET) domain family and compounds that disrupt the localization of oncogenes such as XPO1 inhibitors. My group leverages expertise in mathematical and molecular modeling, functional data analysis, automated and parallel in vitro screening technologies, and genetic manipulation to probe the underlying biology of pediatric diseases, with the hope of identifying liabilities that can be exploited and translated into effective therapies.

Dr. Shelat runs a joint lab with Dr. Christopher Tinkle, and is the director of the Lead Discovery Informatics group.