The Sci-Files – 04/11/2021 – Hayden Stoub – Taking Aim at Tumor Cells

Chelsie Boodoo and Daniel Puentes

Hayden Stoub headshot
Hayden Stoub

On this week’s The Sci-Files, your hosts Chelsie and Danny interview Hayden Stoub. Hayden is a graduate student in Kathleen Gallo’s lab in the Department of Physiology. He studies lung cancer physiology and potential therapies targeted at both tumor and immune cells. Over the years, many advances have been made in how lung cancer is treated, improving both the effectiveness of the treatments, as well as diminishing the harmful side effects. In certain types of lung cancer, however, it’s been more difficult to develop targeted therapies that are effective, leaving patients with cytotoxic chemotherapy as their only option for treatment. Specifically, lung cancer with a mutated KRAS gene have been difficult to treat because they lack other mutations that are easily targetable. While KRAS itself has been targeted with limited success, Hayden’s work looks at ways to target the proteins that are turned on by KRAS, which are often much easier to drug. While it has been long understood that certain immune cells can detect and eliminate cancer cells that arise in the body, recent effort has been made in the cancer research community to understand how some immune cells can actually promote cancer progression. Again, KRAS mutations play a role, this time in the tumor immune microenvironment by promoting inflammation. Hayden’s research investigates how drugs that target this inflammation can prevent lung cancer progression. If this feedback loop between tumor cell progression and immune cell inflammation can be stopped, the aim is that the drugs used to do so can one day be used as effective cancer treatments.  If you’re interested in talking about your MSU research on the radio or nominating a student, please email Chelsie and Danny at [email protected]. Check The Sci-Files out on TwitterFacebookInstagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube!