Reuven Agami performed his PhD research (Thesis: Cell cycle and apoptosis control induced by the tyrosine kinase c-Abl) within the department of molecular genetics at the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel. During his research he identified a novel DNA-damage-induced apoptosis pathway. As a post-doc in the group of Rene Bernards he investigated rapid molecular events that initiate a p53 independent DNA damage response. In September 2001 he started his own group at the Netherlands Cancer Institute. His group developed the first RNAi vector system (pSUPER) to stably knockdown genes in mammalian cells, and then used it to identify novel human tumor suppressor genes. Subsequently, his group developed a microRNA expression vector and library and used it to identify oncogenic miRNAs.
Currently, the main research objective of the Agami team is to better understand the genomic, epigenomic, and metabolic changes leading to cancer in humans - and identify points of vulnerabilities that can be exploited for cancer therapy. The group usse various state-of-the-art genomic tools to interrogate tumor behavior and induce gene alterations and events that are fundamental to cancer development and survival. They believe that the knowledge obtained on these cancer dependencies will allow us to design novel therapeutic approaches.
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