Cancer Research by Dr. Amy Lyndaker Published in Cell Reports Journal

December 04 2017
Category: Faculty

Dr. Amy Lyndaker

Cancer genetics research by Dr. Amy Lyndaker, assistant professor of biology, was recently published in the Cell Reports journal.

Dr. Lyndaker, one of the paper’s co-authors and a corresponding author, completed this research as postdoctoral researcher at Cornell University, and mentored many of the students also listed as co-authors.

The research focused on why some cancers are curable with chemotherapy, while others are not. Testicular cancers, in particular, respond very well to treatment, even after they have metastasized. By generating a novel mouse model that develops the same types of malignant testicular cancers as young men, the researchers were able to show that testicular cancers are so curable because DNA-damaging chemotherapies specifically kill their cancer stem cells.

In most other types of cancers, the stem cells are refractory to treatment. This difference in treatment sensitivity is due to the cell types from which the cancers arise, with germ cells (the cells that normally go on to make sperm, but in this case develop into testicular cancer) being uniquely sensitive to DNA damage. 

The full paper is available through the Cell Reports website, and has been covered by the Cornell Chronicle and Science Daily publications.

Presently, Dr. Lyndaker is studying how cells respond to DNA damage in a variety of contexts.