Main navigation

Andrew Larsen

Class 2009
Education BA, Skidmore College

Dr. Fred Bunz

Current Position Consultant

ClearView Healthcare Partners

Research Interests

I work on novel inhibitors of the sonic hedgehog pathway. Because the development of human gliomas has been linked with aberrant activation of the Hedgehog pathway, we hypothesize that the mechanism of certain inhibitors that have shown efficacy in preclinical models might be at least partially attributable to suppression of Hedgehog signaling. To test this hypothesis, we have shown that clinically-relevant concentrations can impair Hedgehog ligand-dependent activation of a GLI reporter in vitro. Currently, we are exploring possible mechanisms by which such inhibition might occur and extending these observations into in vivo models. Inhibition of a widely activated mitogenic pathway by a drug that is FDA-approved and well tolerated could potentially be exploited as a novel therapy of many types of cancer.


Repurposing the antihelmintic mebendazole as a hedgehog inhibitor. Larsen AR, Bai RY, Chung JH, Borodovsky A, Rudin CM, Riggins GJ, Bunz F. Mol Cancer Ther. 2015 Jan;14(1):3-13. Epub 2014 Nov 5.PMID:25376612

A PTCH1 homolog transcriptionally activated by p53 suppresses Hedgehog signaling. Chung JH, Larsen AR, Chen E, Bunz F. J Biol Chem. 2014 Nov 21;289(47):33020-31. Epub 2014 Oct 8. PMID:25296753