Research

MD Anderson Cancer Center

Master
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Dianna Cody, Ph.D.

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Professor, Department of Imaging Physics
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: dcody@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 563-2712

My personal research interests include the implementation of emerging computed tomographic technology within a challenging clinical environment, the use of computed tomographic imaging for screening purposes, the application of flat-panel computed tomography to animal and human subjects, and the development of improved tools to describe radiation exposure from computed tomographic examinations.

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Benoit de Crombrugghe, M.D.

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Professor, Department of Genetics
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: bdecromb@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 834-6376

My laboratory is studying the transcriptional control of cartilage and bone formation, more specifically, the role of the transcription factor Sox9 in chondrocyte differentiation and the role of the transcription factor Osterix in the differentiation of osteoblasts and osteocytes.

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Robert F. Gagel, M.D. - Director

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Head, Division of Internal Medicine
Professor of Medicine, Department of Endocrine Neoplasia and Hormonal Disorders
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: rgagel@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 792-6517

My primary clinical focus within the Section of Bone and Mineral Disorders, Department of Endocrine Neoplasia and Hormonal Disorders, is the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis in patients with cancer. We have established programs to address bone loss in the context of breast cancer, stem cell transplant, and leukemia. We also look for opportunities to optimize bone health in other malignancies. My research program is focused on the bone resorption inhibitor, calcitonin.

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Valerae O. Lewis, M.D.

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Associate Professor, Department of Orthopaedic Oncology, Division of Surgery
Chief, Orthopaedic Oncology, Division of Surgery
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: volewis@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 792-5073

Our lab is investigating targeted therapy for the treatment of osteosarcoma. Specifically, we are targeting the IL-II Rα and examining the role of the receptor on the progression of the disease.

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Khalid A. Mohamedali, Ph.D.

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Instructor, Department of Experimental Therapeutics
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: kmohamed@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 792-5953

My research program focuses primarily on the development of targeted therapeutic agents for cancer therapy, particularly in relation to bone metastasis. We have tested agents targeting breast and prostate cancer metastasis and growth in bone in various mouse models, leading to a better understanding of the mechanisms by which tumor cells target the bone and promote osteoblastic and osteolytic effects. Of particular interest is the role that bone marrow derived cells (BMDCs) play in all aspects of bone metastasis.

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Nora Navone, Ph.D.

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Associate Professor, Department of Genitourinary Medical Oncology
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: nnavone@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 563-7273

The main focus of my laboratory research is to study the pathogenesis of prostate cancer bone metastases. We have approached our studies by investigating the nature of the prostate cancer-cell-osteoblast interactions and how they exacerbate progression of prostate cancer in bone. The goals of my studies are to develop better models for mimicking prostate cancer growth in the bone and then using these models to enhance our understanding of the process of molecular interactions between prostate cancer and bone cells required in metastasis.

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Krishna Sinha, Ph.D.

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Instructor, Department of Genetics
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: ksinha@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 834-6377 (lab)

My research interest has been on the regulation of Osterix (Osx) function during osteoblast differentiation. Osx is an osteoblast-specific transcription factor which is required for bone formation. Recently, we identified the chromatin protein NO66 as an Osx-interacting protein using a proteomic approach. We are currently involved in exploring the biological role of NO66 in osteoblasts using mouse genetic approach as well as the epigenetic control of Osx target genes expression during bone formation.

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Michael Starbuck, M.S.

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BDPT Bone Histomorphometry Core Manager
Laboratory Coordinator, Nora Navone Laboratory
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: mwstarbu@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 792-2977

I trained in bone histomorphometry in the laboratory of Gerard Karsenty at Baylor College of Medicine and moved to MD Anderson in 2006. With eight years of experience in bone sampling and bone analysis, I have managed the Bone Histomorphometry Core since its creation in 2006. This Core has completed studies for numerous faculty members at MD Anderson, Baylor College of Medicine, and for institutions across North America.

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Qing Yi, M.D., Ph.D.

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Professor of Medicine
John Q. Gaines Foundation Professor for Cancer Research, Department of Lymphoma/Melanoma
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Email: qyi@mdanderson.org
Phone: (713) 563-9065

Our lab is studying the role of tumor microenvironment, including stromal cells and soluble factors, on myeloma and its associated bone disease. We are focusing on C-reactive protein, mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs), and other molecules for their contribution in enhancing osteoclastogenesis, inhibiting osteoclastogenesis, and causing bone lesions.