Much excitement in the low-grade astrocytoma field has been generated by the discovery of frequent mutations in a protein kinase known as BRAF. However these BRAF mutations can account for only ~ one third of these pediatric tumors. The PLGA program at Dana-Farber is focusing on genetic lesions that underlie the remaining two thirds of these tumors. Towards this end, we are creating a dedicated core facility for a technology known as Chromatin Immune Precipitation Sequencing (ChIP/Seq). The ChIP/Seq method identifies potentially druggable genetic targets for DNA-binding proteins known as transcription factors. The ChIP method will be used to identify genetic targets for three transcription factors plus the Olig2 transcription factor which may play an even more pervasive role in pediatric LGAs.

Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Dr. Chuck Stiles