Director of High Throughput Genome Center, Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, North Oakland
Dr. Luo been studying molecular pathology related to human malignancies in the last 24 years. Currently, he is a Professor of Pathology and Director of High Throughput Genome Center at University of Pittsburgh. In the last 16 years, Dr. Luo has been largely focusing on genetic and molecular mechanism of human prostate and hepatocellular carcinomas. In this period, his group has identified and characterized several genes that are related to prostate cancer and hepatocellular carcinoma, including SAPC, myopodin, CSR1, GPx3, ITGA7, MCM7, MT1h and GPC3. He has characterized several signaling pathways that play critical role in prostate cancer development, including Myopodin-ILK-MCM7 inhibitory signaling, myopodin-zyxin motility inhibition pathway, CSR1-CPSF3, CSR1-SF3A3 and CSR1-XIAP apoptotic pathways, MT1h-EHMT1 egigenomic signaling, ITGA7-HtrA2 tumor suppression pathway, GPx3-PIG3 cell death pathway, AR-MCM7 and MCM7-SF3B3 oncogenic pathways. He proposed prostate cancer field effect in 2002. He is one of the pioneers in utilizing high throughput gene expression and genome analyses to analyze field effects in prostate cancer and liver cancer. He is also the first in using methylation array and whole genome methylation sequencing to analyze prostate cancer. Recently, Dr. Luo?s group found that patterns of copy number variants of certain specific genome loci are predictive of prostate cancer clinical outcomes, regardless tissue origin. His discovery of several novel fusion transcripts and their association with aggressive prostate cancer has brought significant new insight into the field of prostate cancer research. Overall, these findings advance our understanding on how cancer develops and behaves, and lay down the foundation for better future diagnosis and treatment of human malignancies.
Currently, my research interests involve identifying new tumor suppressor genes, oncogenes and tumor markers in prostate cancer and hepatocellular carcinoma using high throughput and comprehensive analyses. Subsequently, we will direct our effort to evaluate the prognostic values of these genes and markers in making early diagnosis of these malignancies and serving as drug targets for cancer prevention program. As the Director of High Throughput Genome Center, I have collaborated extensively with faculty members in the UPMC and University campuses to use high throughput genome sequencing and high throughput microarray analyses to develop tests for molecular pathology and to investigate novel mechanisms for signal transduction and identifying markers for human diseases.