My early career contributions were focused on studying different pathological and physiological processes in animal models and in humans. I first studied the SOCS2 protein in JAK/STAT signaling pathway in zebrafish. I worked in Professor Alister Ward’s team at the Deakin University School of Medicine (Australia). Using, morpholino-modified zebrafish, I studied SOCS2 protein expression and inactivation and developed a SOCS2 CRISPR mutant. I then worked on improving cell engineering for therapeutic applications in Professor Andrew Scharenberg’s laboratory at the Seattle Children's Research Institute (SCRI) where I participated in validation of the linear plasmid p(Extended Variable Length) (pEVL).
My graduate research in Dr Laurent Bartholin’s team focused on TGFbeta signaling in pancreatic cancer. Results from my research were highly relevant as I developed and validated a new genetically engineered mouse (GEM) model to study the effect of TGFbeta in the microenvironment of PDAC tumors as well as on muscular atrophy. We showed that TGFbeta produced by the microenvironment promotes tumor development especially in the early stage of tumorigenesis in a Kras mutated context. We also found that TGF beta has a direct effect on muscular atrophy and that nerve fibers invading pancreatic cancer stroma could increase tumor cells aggressiveness through the secretion of TGFbeta.
During my first postdoctoral experience in Dr. Stephanie Dougan lab, I integrated my knowledge on cell engineering and GEM that I acquired during my PhD and graduate student experience to explore how priming of anti-tumor CD4 and CD8 T cell responses occurs in a model of poorly immunogenic cancer. I focused on tumor-specific T cell and myeloid-derived suppressor infiltration into pancreatic tumors in efforts to design effective immunotherapies in preclinical models and clinical trials correlates and discover new biomarkers.
In February 2023, I joined Dr. Francois Radvanyi’s team in the Molecular Oncology lab at Curie Institute. I am working with Pr. Cindy Neuzillet on different clinical trial correlates to decipher pancreatic and biliary tract cancer microenvironment complexity and to identify biomarkers of response to chemotherapy and immunotherapy.