Skip to main content.

Treating (advanced) cancers successfully requires understanding the specifics of cancer biology. Without that knowledge, the targeting of tumors and metastases and minimizing “bystander effects” is not possible. During the last decades, the community of cancer researchers has discovered that tumors are not just a growing mass of cells, but highly differentiated and often behave in many ways like another organ in the body, consisting of complex tissues that interface with the entire host organism. Cancer stem cells are often able to escape during classic tumor therapies that target fast growing cells, ultimately causing cancer relapse. The researchers in our department work toward understanding what makes cancers different from healthy tissue and how to take advantage of this therapeutically. We are the basic research department of KUMC with an emphasis on translating our results into the clinic and the lives of cancer patients.

News and Updates

2/23/2023 - Dakota Okwuone and Harmony Saunders were awarded the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Minority Scholar Award for the upcoming meetings in April.  This important program increases the scientific knowledge base of minority scientists and encourage them to pursue careers in cancer research. Congratulations Dakota and Harmony!

2/7/2023 - Danny Welch, PhD, Receives Grant from METAvivor View Full Details

1/27/23 - Nadia Alissa earns PhD after delivering her Dissertation Defense "Characterizing the Functional Role of Tumor Derived CCL2 in Promoting Skeletal Muscle Wasting/Cachexia in Breast Cancer"

1/18/23 - The following students were awarded the  Biomedical Research Training Program (BRTP) scholarship. 

Eilidh Chowanec, 1st year CB MD/Ph.D. student in Dr. Christy Hagan’s lab

Luis Cortez, a 2nd year CB MD/Ph.D. student in Dr. Bret Freudenthal’s lab

Kafayat Yusuf, 2rd year CB Ph.D. student in Dr. Shahid Umar’s Lab

The BRTP supports applicants who are committed to pursuing externally funded training opportunities such as individual fellowships from the NIH (e.g., F31, F32), NSF, DoD, or private foundations, or contributing to the development of institutional training programs (e.g., T32) from the NIH or private foundations.

KU School of Medicine

University of Kansas Medical Center
Cancer Biology
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City, KS  66160