Metabolism and Energy Signalling in Colorectal Cancer
Colorectal cancer is a major cause of cancer death worldwide necessitating new strategies of disease control. Understanding the cellular signalling that governs growth of cancer cells holds the key to developing agents which interfere with cancer proliferation. The mTOR signalling pathway plays a pivotal role in controlling cell survival and regulation of cell metabolism and energy balance. mTOR is at the heart of integrating stimuli from growth factors, nutrients and several signalling pathways to regulate protein synthesis and growth. Dysregulation of the mTOR signalling axis is implicated in the development of several cancers including colorectal cancer, supporting mTOR signalling as a promising target for chemoprevention. Our research focuses on colorectal cancer prevention by investigating the molecular mechanisms of the anti-tumour effects of chemopreventive agents such as aspirin on mTOR signalling to identify druggable targets in a pathway medicine approach. Development of several agents, each targeting different signalling components could enhance efficacy.
Principal Investigator, Senior Clinical Lecturer and Honorary Consultant Colorectal Surgeon