[Seminar] Dr. Takaomi Sanda "Lineage- and stage-specific oncogenicity of master transcription factors in cancers"
Master transcription factors (MTFs) are a type of transcription factors that determine cell identity and are required for normal development and cellular maintenance. Many MTFs also act as oncogenes depending on the cellular contexts. They form unique transcriptional regulatory circuits (e.g, auto-regulatory loop and feed-forward loop) and are often regulated under large clusters of enhancers (called “super-enhancers”). One of prime examples is TAL1 that is required for normal hematopoiesis. TAL1 acts as an oncogene in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) derived from immature T-cells, while this gene has not been implicated in mature T-cell neoplasms or other cancers. Interestingly, this gene also serves as a hematopoietic reprogramming factor. Another example is IRF4 that has been known as an oncogene in mature lymphoid neoplasms but not in T-ALL. Thus, these factors require specific cellular context to exert their oncogenic property in a lineage- and stage-specific manner. In this talk, I will present our latest findings on the mechanisms behind the oncogenicity of MTFs.
Dr Takaomi Sanda obtained his MD and PhD degrees from the Nagoya City University, Nagoya, Japan, and trained in clinical hematology and oncology. In 2006-2013, he studied in Prof. Thomas Look’s laboratory at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston. In 2013, he was awarded the National Research Foundation (NRF) fellowship and joined the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore as a Principal Investigator. Dr. Sanda has been studying transcription factor abnormalities in T-cell malignancies and neuroblastoma.