Myron Ignatius, PhD
Rank: Assistant Professor
Department: Molecular Medicine
Discover novel treatments in relapsed pediatric cancer by defining tumor heterogeneity and its effect on self-renewal and metastasis.
- Zebrafish Cancer Models and genetics
- Embryonal Rhabdomyosarcoma research
- Stem Cell Biology
The Ignatius laboratory is interested in understanding the effects of tumor heterogeneity on relapse and resistance to therapies in Rhabdomyosarcoma and other sarcomas. Relapse is a significant problem in the clinic where less than 40% of patients with relapse will survive their disease. Rhabdomyosarcoma is a pediatric malignancy of the muscle that is also the most common soft tissue sarcoma in children. Specifically, the Ignatius laboratory will study tumorigenic cell populations that self-renew and metastasize using a combination of zebrafish, murine xenograft, and human cell culture systems.
In addition to research on rhabdomyosarcoma, the Ignatius laboratory has also generated new syngeneic zebrafish models of aggressive Malignant Nerve Sheath Tumors, and hemangiosarcomas for which there are no effective treatments. Our research will uncover critical molecular pathways that modulate Tumor propagating cell numbers and the plasticity of the cancer stem cell state. A unique and innovative aspect of our research is the ability to visualize in live animals the evolution of tumors and to model the effects of patient-specific changes on tumor dynamics. Research in the laboratory will combine sequencing platforms with zebrafish tumor models to identify new genes or pathways that drive relapse intending to identify nodes to target with personalized medicines in children with relapsed cancer.
Anil Kumar Challa, PhD
Jiangfei Chen, PhD
Graduate Research Assistant (PhD student, CGM)
Greehey Graduate Fellowship
Animal Care Technician
Prethish Sreenivas, PhD
Long Wang, MD
Kunal Baxi, PhD to receive Translational Science Training (TST) TL1 award. (Ignatius Lab)
KENS5: UT Health working to fight children’s cancer with Hyundai Hope on Wheels grant (Houghton, Aune, Ignatius mention)
BioSpace: Hyundai Hope On Wheels Presents UT Health San Antonio With Hyundai Young Investigator And Scholar Hope Grant Totaling A Combined $500,000 To Support Pediatric Cancer Research (Aune & Ignatius Labs)
- The Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Rides Again! January 20, 2023
- Molecular Cancer Theraputics: Sensitization to Ionizing Radiation by MEK Inhibition Is Dependent on SNAI2 in Fusion-Negative Rhabdomyosarcoma (Ignatius, Vaseva, Houghton Labs) January 3, 2023
- Nicole Hensch (Ignatius Lab) Successfully Defends PhD Thesis! May 17, 2022
- WNDU, TV in South Bend, Ind (via Ivanhoe Network):
Cancer researchers turn to small fish to save lives
- WJMN, Northern Michigan, (via Ivanhoe Network):
- NBC, DFW (via Ivanhoe Network)
Zebrafish Used in Fight Against Childhood Cancer.
- Ivanhoe Network:
Kennedie & Zebrafish Fight Cancer Together
- FYI: About Ivanhoe Network:
“We are the country’s largest news-gathering organization covering medical breakthroughs, family health, and issues relevant to women. The information we provide is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician.
- SA Express-News
Zebrafish help UT Health researcher find treatments for childhood cancers
- TPR:(With audio)
Zebrafish May Help Scientists Find New Cancer Treatments
- UT Health SA Newsroom:
Surprising finding using the zebrafish model explains how recurring cancer may resist treatment