Investigating breast cancer development in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers

Investigating breast cancer development in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers

Project details

This project will address the molecular mechanisms leading to the development of breast cancer in women that harbour BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations.

The project involves single cell RNA-seq analyses of different cell populations isolated from precancerous breast tissue of wild-type, and BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers. The information obtained will determine the secondary molecular events that collaborate with loss of BRCA1/2 and will be of benefit for exploring novel pathways that are perturbed and potentially targetable with drugs. 

The student will be trained in the establishment of lab models of breast cancer, immunohistochemistry, western blotting, cell sorting and imaging techniques, and analysis of molecular data.

About our research group

The Breast Cancer Laboratory, jointly headed by Professor Jane Visvader and Professor Geoff Lindeman, has made multiple important contributions to breast cancer research. A major effort is to define the role of epithelial cell sub-populations in normal breast tissue and determine the ‘cell-of-origin’ leading to the different sub-types of breast cancer. Isolating and studying different breast cell populations has led to key milestones in identifying specific drug targets, with the ultimate aim of translation to the clinic.

The group also utilises human breast cancer xenograft preclinical models, which directly assess the impact of single and combinatorial treatment regimes on tumour survival. Using highly advanced imaging strategies, the laboratory has made significant progress in understanding cellular dynamics during breast tissue remodelling from puberty to pregnancy, which has major implications for better understanding tumour development. 



Professor Jane Visvader

Jane Visvader
Joint Division Head

Professor Geoff Lindeman

Professor Geoff Lindeman in the lab
Joint Division Head

Project Type:

Three researchers in the laboratory

Our researchers have discovered that an existing medication could have promise in preventing breast cancer in women carrying a faulty BRCA1 gene.