Group Members

Research Focus

 

Our research is focused on tumors, such as breast, endocrine, and lung cancers, etc. We study the cellular and molecular basis of cancer. We are involved in the areas of immunology, molecular oncology, diagnostic and therapeutic techniques for cancer, and autoimmune diseases. By performing in-depth literature reviews and analysis of the data we understand the underlying disease mechanisms.

 

We aim to find the most effective biomarkers and cancer treatment approaches. We are also involved in research projects in collaboration with our partners.

 

Projects

 

Cancer and COVID - Shared Genetics and Therapeutics

 

The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic originated in 2019 and caused over 1.3 million deaths. As an emerging virus, the exact pathology of the SARS-CoV-2 is not yet fully understood. Among different implicated pathways by SARS-CoV-2, some are also associated with various cancers. Our aim is to explore the role of ACE2/TPMRSS2 in the virus’s path through a cell and in different cancers. Moreover, the shared intracellular signal transduction pathways like p53, mTOR, and PI3K, and the immunoinflammatory responses are also explored. Additionally, we are identifying the current therapeutics targeting the modulation of elements of these pathways in cancers and assess the potential of repurposing these drugs for COVID-19 treatment.

 

Identification of Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2) as the Potential Biomarker in SARS-CoV-2 and  Renal Cell Carcinoma

 

Cancers predispose individuals to exhibit high rates of SARS-CoV-2 infections as well as critical disease outcomes. The angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) is a membrane glycoprotein expressed in various tissues like the kidney, the endothelium, the lungs, and the heart. Besides SARS-CoV-2, its varied expression has been found to be associated with different pathologies, including cancers. The heterogeneous expression of ACE2 could be attributed to epigenetic or post-transcriptional changes. We aim to analyze the expression of ACE2 in conjunction with renal cell carcinomas (RCCs) subtypes. Using computational analyses, we intend to investigate the association of ACE2 expression and clinicopathological features of RCCs. Moreover, the methylation status of the ACE2 gene promoter in RCCs, the survival analysis in RCCs patients relating to ACE2 expression and immune cell filtration will also be determined. Further, the functional analysis will explore the ACE2-mediated shared pathways in RCCs and SARS-CoV-2. These findings will evaluate the susceptibility of RCC patients to SARS-CoV-2 infection as well as predict disease prognosis. Overall, our results will indicate the importance of ACE2 as a potential biomarker in progressive kidney cancers and SARS-CoV-2.

 

 

 

Cancer Biology and Immunology

Dr. Saba Haq, Ph.D.

Research Associate

Ph.D. Life Sciences, Hanyang University, South Korea

saba.h@camcid.org

 

Dr. Namrah Anwar, Ph.D. 

Research Associate

Ph.D. Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Aga Khan University Hospital, Pakistan

namrah.a@camcid.org

 

Tunch Akmandor, Ph.D. (In progress)

Research Assistant

Ph.D. Biomedical Science (Cancer Immunopharmacology), Middlesex University, UK

MSc. Biomedical Science (Haematology and Transfusion Science), Middlesex University, UK

MSc. Biomedical Science (Cellular Pathology), Nottingham Trent University, UK

tunch.a@camcid.org

 

Leah Meyer, BSc.

Research Assistant

BSc. Biochemistry, University of Bristol, UK

leah.m@camcid.org

 

Research Coordinator

Sidrah Rahman

sidrah@camcid.org