Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center

Chromatin Biology (CB)


Program Leadership


Suzanne Fuqua, Ph.D.

Item Definition


Cheryl Walker, Ph.D.

Item Definition



The Chromatin Biology Program (CB) formally known as Nuclear Receptor, Transcription and Chromatin Biology (NRTCB) Program has 22 research members and two clinical investigators all of whom are federally funded investigators involved in basic and/or clinical research related to nuclear receptor and transcriptional dysregulation in cancer. Members of the program have a strong record of both intra-programmatic collaboration and inter-programmatic interactions with both basic and clinical programs throughout the cancer center.

The program has two main themes:

  • Identification of NRs and transcription factors that contribute to tumorigenesis, disclosure of their molecular mechanism of action, and evaluation of their potential as novel targets for therapeutic intervention in cancer.
  • Disclosure of the epigenetic factors and mechanisms that contribute to cancer development via chromatin regulatory factors.

To address these themes, members of the program use a combination of omics, computational and chemical biology approaches to identify new transcriptional vulnerabilities and targets for therapeutic intervention in tumor development. Members also utilize functional genomics approaches and genetically manipulated mouse model systems to evaluate the consequences of NR and chromatin factor dysregulation on tumor development and for targeted drug screening in mouse models of cancer. Clinical translation efforts within the program are aimed at developing new “first-in-line’ small molecules targeting dysregulated NRs and chromatin regulatory factors and examining their therapeutic activity in cancers.

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