Mahvash Tavassoli

Mahvash Tavassoli


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Personal profile

Research interests

The focus of my research over the past 10 years has been the study of cell cycle regulation and apoptosis with the aim of developing molecular strategies to improve the detection and treatment of head and neck cancers. This work has resulted in some important breakthroughs in the understanding of the molecular pathways involved in the development, progression and treatment of head and neck cancers, see list of publications (full list in PubMed). Recently my focus has shifted towards the clinical translational application of our fundamental research. My lab is currently involved in several multicentre, national and international biomarker studies with the aim to develop molecular signatures which allow us to predict patient response to radio- chemotherapy as well as targeted therapies. Research of my group has been supported by grants from peer reviewed external sources including MRC, CRUK, BBSRC, DTI, The Royal Society, Leukaemia Research Fund, Breast Cancer Research Trust, Lady Tata Memorial Fund, Rosetrees Trust etc. Current research in the laboratory focuses on four complementary areas: Current projects include:

  1. Personalising curative treatment decisions for locally advanced head and neck cancer through the identification of biological markers
  2. Detection of circulatory microRNA biomarkers as a non-invasive tool for the detection of early stage cancers
  3. Evaluation of molecular and imaging biomarkers of hypoxia in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma using Cu-ATSM Positron Emission Tomography (PET)
  4. Development of tumour specific molecular intervention applying the tumour specific cytotoxic effects of a viral protein called apoptin
  5. Novel targeted combination therapies with recombinant Trail, Smac mimetics and bortezomib
  6. Molecular pathogenesis of Human Papilloma virus-associated oropharyngeal cancers
  7. Detection of premalignant lesions and cancer prediction

Research interests (short)

Control of apoptosis.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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