How is the Englander Institute transforming medicine?

Founded in 2015, the Englander Institute’s primary mission is to uncover the molecular roots of disease using genomic sequencing, informatics, and other technologies. This information is then used to personalize disease treatment and prevention. To achieve this, computational biologists first analyze tumor sequencing data and summarize the key clinical and genetic findings. Then, a team of interdisciplinary specialists, including pathologists, molecular biologists, oncologists and basic scientists use these findings to determine the best treatment options for each patient.

Precision medicine targeted individualized care is tailored to each patient based on his or her specific genetic profile and medical history. Unlike the traditional one-size-fits-all medicine, practitioners of precision medicine use genomic sequencing tools to interrogate a patient’s entire genome to locate the specific genetic alterations that have given rise to and are driving his or her tumor. With this information, they can identify small molecule drugs, monoclonal antibodies, vaccines, and other therapies that are most precisely targeted and are therefore most effective and have the fewest side effects.

Our institutional priorities include the development of a centralized procedure for evaluating the molecular changes (genetic, epigenetic, gene expression) associated with both solid tumors and hematologic malignancies. Genomic analyses of tumor tissue will enable researchers to identify treatments for patients with advanced disease and no existing treatment options, and also help determine the mechanisms of drug resistance in patients who stop responding to treatments, redirecting them to more successful therapies. Discovery based on such genomic analyses will be central to the development of novel, personalized therapies based on the unique genetic tumor profile, and will lead to evaluation of new drugs in innovative clinical trials.

Dr. Himisha Beltran, EIPM Director of Clinical and Translational Research Presents: