This programme aims to establish integrated (epi)genomic analysis in a clinical setting, utilizing the NET BioBank at the Royal Free and UCL Hospitals. Neuroendocrine Tumors (NETs) are a heterogeneous group of neoplasms which arise from the hormone-producing cells of the bodyís nervous and endocrine systems and affect 1/50,000 in the UK population.
The involvement of DNA methylation in health and disease is well established but not yet fully understood. The aim of this project is to develop novel experimental and computational methods for the analysis of 5-methyl-cytosine (5mC) and 5-hydoxymethyl-cytosine (5hmC).
We utilize and develop computational tools for the analysis of biological data, primarily obtained from studies of DNA methylation. The data predominantly comes from either second generation sequencing platforms or methylation arrays.
Epigenomics of Common Disease
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified many variations but their effect sizes are modest and the majority of causality remains unexplained for most common diseases. The aim of this project is to integrate GWAS with epigenome-wide association studies (EWAS) to gain a more complete picture of the aetiology of common diseases, including T1D, T2D and UC.
Head and Neck Cancer Epigenome Project
Head and Neck Squamous Cell Cancer (HNSCC) is the sixth most common cancer worldwide and increasingly caused by infection with human papilloma virus (HPV). The aim of this project is to analyse HPV and non HPV-associated HNSCC epigenomes for differences in DNA methylation and microRNA expression for translation into biomarkers and therapeutic targets.
Epigenetics of Urological Cancers
Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer in the UK with over 11,000 new cases and almost 5,000 deaths per year. This project aims to provide a better understanding of how aberrant DNA methylation can affect the aetiology of bladder cancer and how we can use this information to identify novel epigenetic biomarkers for the diagnosis and prognosis of the disease.
Glioma Cancer Stem Cell Methylome
Gliomas are the most common form of primary brain tumours. Glioma cancer stem cells (CSC) are cells that possess characteristics associated with normal stem cells but are tumourigenic and can cause relapse and metastasis by giving rise to new tumours. Using methylome analysis, this project aims to characterize epigenetic changes that occur during the differentiation of glioma CSC to committed progenitor cells.
Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) are pluripotent cells derived from reprogramming of non-pluripotent cells such as skin or blood cells. iPSC have great potential for regenerative and therapeutic medicine. The aim of this project is to assess the efficiency of different reprogramming protocols using methylome analysis.
This EU Network of Excellence aims to link epigenetics with systems biology. The multidisciplinary consortium will model and quantify the dynamics and mechanisms of epigenetic modulation at the cellular and organismal level. Our contribution is to explore and quantify the link between genotype and epigenotype.
This public/private translational consortium will develop methods for systematic generation and validation of oncology biomarkers to advance personalized therapy and medicine. Genomic, epigenomic and transcriptomic data will be generated and analyzed using a modeling system developed for the TREAT1000 project. Our contribution is the generation and analysis of epigenomic data.
IT Future of Medicine (ITFoM) is one of six flagship pilot projects will take advantage of recent technological advances to produce computational models of individual patients - ëvirtual patientsí. These models will follow each patient through their healthcare system enabling physicians to virtually test and optimise personalized treatments
This project represents the EU contribution to the International Human Epigenome Consortium (IHEC). It focuses on the analysis of haematopoietic epigenomes from healthy individuals and patients with common leukaemias and autoimmune disease. Our main contribution to BLUEPRINT is an epigenome-wide association study (EWAS) in Type 1 Diabetes.
This consortium will carry out integrated research on developmental determinants of aging and longevity with focus on epigenetic mechanisms. Our contribution to IDEAL is to determine the role of DNA methylation in haematopoietic stem cell aging.
Stephan Beck, PhD FMedSci
Prof of Medical Genomics
UCL Cancer Institute
University College London
Paul OíGorman Building
72 Huntley Street
London WC1E 6BT, UK