2021 LCRF-AstraZeneca Research Grant
Lior Golomb, PhD
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Investigating the ER Acetyl-CoA transporter as a putative metabolic dependency of mutant EGFR lung cancer
A large percentage of all newly diagnosed lung tumors have specific mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene. These patients are often treated with a class of drugs that unlike traditional chemotherapy, target the mutated gene with high precision, killing only the cancer cells. Osimertinib is the leading drug used to treat patients with advanced lung cancer that harbor EGFR specific mutations. Osimertinib shows remarkable specificity, potency and reduced toxicity compared to drugs of the same class but unfortunately, all patients treated with osimertinib or other EGFR-targeting drugs, eventually relapse. To understand the mechanisms that drive osimertinib resistance, Dr. Golomb has been conducting a comprehensive study using cutting-edge genetic engineering technology to study how resistance to osimertinib develops and how to make these tumors more susceptible to existing therapies. Through that effort he discovered that EGFR positive lung cancer cells are sensitive to targeting of a key metabolic gene called SLC33A1. The LCRF-AstraZeneca grant will enable him to study this discovery in depth and will hopefully lead to the development of new drugs and therapeutic schemes to delay osimertinib resistance and significantly extend the lives of lung cancer patients.