My laboratory is focused on defining the molecular mechanisms that drive cancer progression and metastasis. Primary cancer eventually spreads to the lung, liver, bone and brain by invading into blood. At these distal sites, the tumor cells continue evolve and grow resulting in heterogeneous and diverse populations of metastatic tumors, which pose a major therapeutic challenge and are also the leading cause of cancer-related deaths. Using cell culture, mouse models, patient-derived tissues and circulating breast cancer cells (CTCs) enriched from breast cancer patients, my lab characterizes the contribution of oncogenic and epigenetic cues, tumor microenvironment-derived signals, lineage switches and tumor heterogeneity to cancer progression and therapeutic responses. Our goal is to identify molecular nodes that are critical for the maintenance and survival of cancer cell populations using ‘omics’ approaches and to validate the findings in functional models followed by drug screens. I have published several seminal papers in high impact journals on these topics and have the expertise and training in most aspects of tumor biology to successfully direct the proposed project. I am Co-Director of the Circulating Tumor Cell Laboratory at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and one of the co-founders of a company, TellBio, that will commercialize the CTC-iChip technology. My group closely collaborates across several disciplines including the engineers at MGH. I have successfully worked with breast oncologists and Bioinformaticians over the past years on translational projects in breast cancer. My lab has an unprecedented suite of experimental models and patient-derived samples to achieve our research goals.