The Laboratory of Translational Genetics (LTG) at the VIB-KU Leuven Center for Cancer Biology headed by Prof. Diether Lambrechts is interested in the discovery of genetic or epigenetic markers, either as susceptibility factors for cancer development, as prognostic markers to improve the molecular genetic annotation of cancer or as predictive markers for targeted cancer therapies. In particular, our main interest lies in understanding which (epi)-genetic factors modulate hypoxia-driven tumorigenesis or predict response to therapies targeting hypoxia-driven oncogenesis, such as anti-angiogenic therapies.
One of our main research topics is to investigate how hypoxia influences the cancer epigenome, possibly by regulating TET hydroxylase activity and affecting DNA demethylation. Notably, TET hydroxylases belong to the same family of dioxygenases as the PHDs, which target hypoxia-inducible factors for degradation and are considered key mediators of the hypoxic response.
Diether Lambrechts is a Belgian geneticist and professor at the KU Leuven and VIB. He is the Director of the Vesalius Research Center. Lambrechts is known for his multidisciplinary approach to dissecting tumor biology. Major scientific contributions include identifying oxygen supply regulation as an anti-cancer treatment strategy. In 2013, Lambrechts was awarded an ERC Consolidator award.