The goal of my current research is to understand the basis for ‘mutual exclusivities’ in mutated gene pairs in human cancer and the relationship between the immune system and tumorigenesis. These two areas are primarily tied together by a need to understand oncogenic signaling pathways. For example, why are certain pairs of mutations never observed during the course of tumorigeneis? What signals do cancer cells provide that alert the immune system? These questions are explored in a way that should inform therapeutic opportunities---agonistic therapy to force intolerable signaling pathways in cancer and methods to boost tumor cell recognition by the immune system.
Unni AM, Lockwood WW, Zejnullahu K, Lee-Lin SQ, Varmus H. Evidence that synthetic lethality underlies the mutual exclusivity of oncogenic KRAS and EGFR mutations in lung adenocarcinoma. Elife. 2015 Jun 5;4.
Furlan SN, Mandraju R, Brewer T, Roybal K, Troutman TD, Hu W, Palm NW, Unni A, Pasare C. Enhancement of anti-tumor CD8 immunity by IgG1-mediated targeting of Fc receptors. MAbs. 2014 Jan-Feb;6(1):108-18.
Unni AM, Bondar T, Medzhitov R. Intrinsic sensor of oncogenic transformation induces a signal for innate immunosurveillance. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008 Feb 5;105(5):1686-91.