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Michael Topper

Class 2012
Education BS, University of Maryland Baltimore County

Dr. Steve Baylin

Dr. Cindy Zahnow

Research Interests

Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), a disease characterized by a dismal five-year survival rate of 15%, and an overall refractoriness to current treatment modalities. Delay of diagnosis results in 57% of NSCLC patients presenting with advanced metastatic disease, which limits the number of surgically resectable tumors. Thus, for many patients the only treatment option is that of chemotherapeutic intervention with inevitable disease resistance and recurrence.

Epigenetic treatment, combined with chemotherapy, may provide a differing outcome than resistance and disease progression. My project aims to epigenetically sensitize NSCLC through the combined use of DNA methyltransferase and histone deacteylase inhibitors to conventional chemotherapeutics.