Andrew A. Quong, PhD
Associate Professor and Division Leader
2012-2013 BCRF Project(s):
Nanotechnology and Integrative Cancer Biology
Department of Oncology
Kimmel Cancer Center
Thomas Jefferson University
Support from BCRF has allowed Dr. Quong to complete his studies examining changes in protein levels in breast tumors. From these observed changes, Dr. Quong's team found changes in the metabolism of tumor cells that are related to the local microenvironment of the tumor. These changes in metabolism can potentially be exploited for both imaging and drug development. In addition, Dr. Quong has continued his work identifying markers that are indicators of toxicity and response to therapy.
In 2012-2013, the goal of Dr. Quong's research is to determine new strategies for patient treatment that include radiation therapy. By measuring the protein and gene expression in tumors, his will use this information for choosing treatment and also monitoring the patients' response to treatment both for effectiveness and adverse side effects.
Mid-year Progress: Dr. Quong's team continues to develop and implement methods for the evaluation of changes in the levels of proteins in clinical samples from breast cancer patients. In close collaboration with fellow grantee, Dr. Richard Zellars (Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Dr. Quong and colleagues have analyzed a large set of blood samples from patients who underwent radiation therapy at Johns Hopkins. Their preliminary results have determined that there are measurable changes in these samples that correlate with treatment and possibly with race. Dr. Quong's team is examining these results in more detail to test the hypothesis of the study that these changes in protein expression are related to toxicity from treatment that differs in African American women. In addition, they are continuing their work in examining the metabolic changes in cancer cells compared to normal cells.
Dr. Quong has been active in the areas of nanoscience, surface physics, and materials science where his work was focused on calculating their fundamental properties to better understand structure function relationships. More recently, he was responsible leading the Systems Biology effort at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and was the Deputy Director of the BioSecurity and NanoSciences Laboratory (BSNL), a basic research center. In this capability he was responsible for the oversight of the Systems Biology and Proteomics research areas.
In the proteomics area, he was responsible for bio-mass spectrometry efforts in the BSNL. This included as suite of complementary tools including an ion trap, a MALDI-TOF and a FTMS. He has successfully developed algorithms and software tools originally developed for large-scale systems studies such as chemical kinetics and applied them to biological systems such as calcium signaling. He has worked on the development of algorithms to analyze large "ohmic" datasets using fuzzy logic and multivariate analysis. His current work is in developing nanoscale platforms for cancer diagnostics and therapeutics along with systems biology and proteomic approaches to understanding the molecular mechanisms of disease.