University of Vermont Cancer Center Member Profile

    Yvonne Janssen-Heininger, PhD

    Program Co-Leader, Cancer Cell, UVM Cancer Center
    Professor, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine-Research

    Full Member
    Academic Interests
    The environment of lung tumors is hostile requiring tumors to adapt to be able to survive and grow. Part of this adaptation is a change in metabolism and increases the antioxidant system that includes glutathione to combat the augmented oxidative (redox) stress, which causes chemotherapy to be less effective. Dr. Janssen-Heininger's laboratory addresses the mechanisms whereby tumors boost glutathione and offer new strategies to prevent the increases in glutathione from happening. They are using sophisticated preclinical models to decipher the tumor genetics, metabolism and redox state with unparalleled precision, including tumor organoids derived from biopsies or resections. They are also testing whether strategies to prevent adaptation to the oxidative (redox) environment can be used in conjunction with chemotherapy or immunotherapy to make them more effective and less toxic, examining whether FDA-approved drugs can be used in combination with other cancer medicines and aim to test these in Phase 1 clinical trials, and developing new "redox" medicines with the goals to use them in conjunction with existing therapies.

    Other Titles, Distinctions and Appointments
    University of Vermont Distinguished Professor