Research Overview and Faculty Interests

Ongoing projects can be divided into the following different areas.

Solid tumors

Dr. Donna Hansel is studying the mechanism of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathway in promoting bladder cancer progression with a strong emphasis on identifying novel downstream targets of mTORC1 and mTORC2 complexes that influence migration and invasion of bladder cancer cells. She is also investigating the tumor immune microenvironment of bladder cancer to identify putative mediators of mTOR complex signaling in this human disease.

Dr. Christopher Corless has developed mass spectroscopy-based panels that are used for oncogene mutation screening across a variety of solid tumors and hematologic malignancies. Dr. Terry Morgan is studying novel markers for the diagnosis of HPV-related lesions of the cervix and oropharynx.

Neurobiology

Dr. Matthew Wood studies the clinical applications of next-generation sequencing and other advanced molecular testing for the diagnosis and classification of primary central nervous system tumors. Dr. Randy Woltjer is examining the effects of neurodegenerative diseases and myopathies in humans and in rodent models.

Hematologic malignancies

Dr. Guang Fan is investigating the predictive and prognostic impacts of oncogenic mutations in cases of AML and pre-B ALL. Dr. Marc Loriaux has developed a novel screening method for assessing drug sensitivity in newly diagnosed cases of AML. Dr. Jennifer Dunlap is researching the feasibility of flow cytometry analysis to identify differences in lymphoma subtypes.

Dr. Phil Raess is the OHSU principal investigator for the Lymphoma/Leukemia Molecular Profiling Project (LLMPP), and is also interested in developing novel diagnostic tools to investigate the pathogenesis of hematologic malignancies.

Informatics

Dr. Greg Scott is researching early diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease using predictive modeling, nationwide clinical data, and skin/gut tissue pathology. Additionally, he is working on linking germline genetics to histopathology of early Parkinson’s disease using the Million Veterans Program, and adding the ability for Epic to screen for drug-induced liver disease. 

Molecular diagnostics

Dr. Richard Press is developing novel assays for a number of different infectious disease agents, as well as tests for minimal residual disease testing in hematologic tumors. Dr. Chris Corless is pursuing applications of massively parallel sequencing in translational and clinical studies.

Placenta and fetal growth

Dr. Terry Morgan continues his investigations into the effects of altered blood flow on the development and function of the placenta; his newest study utilizes a mouse model to test the effects of receptor antibodies on spiral artery remodeling. Decreased blood flow not only predisposes to pre-eclampsia, but results in reduced fetal size and a life-time increased risk for hypertension after birth.

Renal pathology

Dr. Nicole Andeen studies clinicopathologic correlations of a wide spectrum renal diseases including autoimmune, genetic, metabolic, hematologic, and neoplasia-related kidney diseases. We collaborate with nephrologists, rheumatologists, proteomics faculty, basic scientists, and others in the study of diseases that affect the kidney.

Other research activities

Dr. Ken Gatter is studying legal issues related to property rights to human tissue samples, and the use of human tissue in research. He is also establishing a medical-legal partnership study; this pilot project’s focus is on a select socioeconomic grouping of patients at a local OHSU clinic.