Grants - Designated Grants - California - 2019

Alan Ashworth, Ph.D.

Funded in partnership with the Goldberg Family Foundation and in collaboration with the Gray Foundation

Individuals with BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations have an increased risk of developing breast, ovarian, pancreas, prostate and other types of cancer. Tumors arising in these individuals are often sensitive to PARP inhibitors (PARPi) and this class of drugs has shown remarkable success in the treatment of BRCA1 and BRCA2-mutant tumors. Despite these successes, tumors frequently become resistant to therapy. Using functional genomic approaches, we will investigate mechanisms of resistance and identify novel genetic vulnerabilities that can be exploited by PARPi treatment. We will also investigate the immune response to BRCA-mutant tumors and explore ways to improve the ability of immune cells to recognize and kill these tumors. The ultimate goal of these studies is to improve outcomes for patients with BRCA-mutant tumors and to identify new groups of patients that can benefit from PARPi.