Damon Runyon Researchers

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Peter J. Turnbaugh, PhD

Variations in drug efficacy and toxicity between patients are a major limitation to the long-term treatment of cancer. Even if the initial treatment is successful, cancers can return due to the emergence of cancer drug resistance. Dr. Turnbaugh seeks to determine how the gut microbiome (bacteria residing in the human body) contributes to drug efficacy and resistance. He will combine microbiology and pharmacology approaches to identify new microbiome-based biomarkers for monitoring and predicting acquired drug resistance. The findings will also have broad implications for development of more effective treatment regimens for patients with colorectal as well as other cancers. 

Project title: "The gut microbiome: an unexpected contributor to cancer drug resistance"
Institution: University of California, San Francisco
Named Award: Nadia’s Gift Foundation Innovator
Award Program: Innovator
Cancer Type: Colorectal
Research Area: Microbiology