Professor in Residence, Department of Neurological Surgery, UCSF
Karen Osney Brownstein Endowed Chair in Molecular Neuro-Oncology, UCSF
Research SummaryI am a Professor of Neurosurgery at UCSF and hold the Karen Osney Brownstein Endowed Chair in Neuro-oncology. I am the Director of the NIH-supported Training Program in Translational Brain Tumor Research at UCSF, and I recently served as the Director of the UCSF-based NIH Roadmap Epigenome Mapping Center. I am an Associate Member of the British Columbia Genome Sciences Centre. My laboratory is composed of molecular and computational biologists working alongside clinician-scientists. Our goal is to understand the full evolutionary history of human brain tumors, from the first mutation and epimutation through clonal selection and tumor recurrence. We use next-generation sequencing to discover patterns and interdependencies of genetic mutations, epigenetic alternations and gene expression.
Current projects incorporate MRI-guided tumor biopsies and treatment data with longitudinal genomics to allow the reconstruction of tumor evolution in the context of the human tumor in vivo. In collaboration with the Okada laboratory, we will be exploring the application of immune therapies to target tumor specific mutations and tumors that emerge as hypermutated following chemotherapy. On the gene level, we recently discovered the mechanism by which mutation in the TERT gene promoter leads to telomerase activation, and are pursuing further mechanistic and therapeutic studies aimed at reversing tumor cell immortalization. TERT promoter mutation is one of the most common mutations in cancer in adults.
Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI, B.S., 1984-1988, Biology
Loyola University, Chicago, IL, Ph.D., 1990-1994, Neuroscience
Ludwig Institute, La Jolla, CA, Postdoc, 1994-1999, Molecular Biology of Brain Tumors
Assistant Professor and PI, Dept. of Neurological Surgery, Univ. of California San Francisco
Director, Epigenetics Division of the UCSF CCC Program in Cell Cycling and Signaling
Associate Professor, Dept. of Neurological Surgery, University of California, San Francisco
Karen Osney Brownstein Endowed Chair in Molecular Neuro-Oncology
Director, NIH Roadmap Epigenome Mapping Center
Professor, Department of Neurological Surgery, UCSF
Honors & Awards
Human Epigenome Project committee
Nature, Editors Roundatable on the future of Epigenetics
Scientific Advisory Council, Brain Tumor Society (NBTS)
International Epigenome Project (AHEAD), committee member
Editorial Board, Neuro-Oncology and Journal of Neuro-Oncology
International Human Epigenome Consortium (IHEC), member
Outstanding Research Achievement Award, by Nature Biotechnology
AACR Special Conferences Committee, member
Keynote Lecture, Inaugural Clinical Epigenomics Conference
Keynote Lecture, European Association for Neuro-Oncology Annual Meeting
Chair, Gordon Conference on Genetics and Epigenetics
Distinguished Lecture, DKFZ, Heidelberg
Chair, Research Oversight Committee, Genome Quebec Pediatric Brain Tumors
BC Genome Sciences Center, Associate Member
Keynote Lecture, Medulloblastoma in the Mountains
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- Costello JF. Stem cells: Tips for priming potency. Nature. 2008 Jul 3; 454(7200):45-6.
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- Randall IM, Costello J, Carvalho JC. Transversus abdominis plane block in a patient with debilitating pain from an abdominal wall hematoma following cesarean delivery. Anesth Analg. 2008 Jun; 106(6):1928.
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