Gonghong Wei, Ph.D., Docent, Academy Research Fellow
Biocenter Oulu and Faculty of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, University of Oulu
P.O.Box 5000, FIN-90014 University of Oulu, Finland
Aapistie 5A, 90220 Oulu, Finland
Tel. +358-(0)294 486111,
e-mail: gonghong.wei (at) oulu.fi
Transcription factors (TFs) are sequence-specific DNA-binding proteins. The human genome contains approximately 1400 TFs contributing to complex gene regulation and accurate cell growth control. Aberrant expression of TFs is frequently observed in cancer of the breast and prostate, Ewing's sarcoma and leukemia. Charting gene regulatory networks driven by the TFs in cancer cells is a systematic way to discover novel mechanisms and clinical markers for cancer risk prediction and therapy. Here, we aim to uncover the cancerous roles of multiple TFs including key members of the ETS, HOX and Forkhead classes of DNA-binding proteins. Together with data from genome-wide association studies, we aim to see how cancer risk-associated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) alter TF–DNA binding at sites of clinically important enhancers. We will validate key findings including risk SNPs, enhancers and genes that are potentially prognostic and diagnostic markers that could be used for cancer patient risk prediction and stratification.