Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Figure 1

"There is no greatness where simplicity, goodness and truth are absent" - Leo Tolstoy


The mission of our laboratory is to develop new therapies for the treatment of cancer and heart diseases by targeting the tissue microenvironment.

As a seed needs the correct light, water, and soil to germinate and grow, most malignant diseases require a highly specialized environment to initiate, develop and progress. Interactive stromal cells including vasculature, immune cells, and stem cells, create a tissue-specific microenvironment with abundant soluble factors and matrix conducive to disease progression and tissue self-renewal. Our investigations focus on the abnormal blood vessels that are a key component of the microenvironment, providing a requisite niche for tumor generation and progression and post-injury cardiac repair. The goal of our laboratory is to decipher the key mechanisms that control the formation of a body-hostile, disease-friendly tissue microenvironment. By targeting the tissue microenvironment we will be able to penetrate the microenvironment allowing host defenses and situation-specific therapies to attack the diseased tissue with great efficacy.