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Urologic Cancers

Researching mechanisms of bladder and kidney cancer initiation and progression to develop novel therapeutics and treatments for genitourinary malignancies.

 Shilajit Kundu Lab
Investigating the association between inflammatory bowel disease and prostate cancer

Research Description

Dr. Kundu has successfully conducted and published on prospective evaluations of patients with urologic cancers and found that the impact of cancer treatment goes beyond physical limitations associated with treatment. The application of these findings have resulted in interventions to improve the physician-patient relationship, patient education and the health care environment overall.

Dr. Kundu is currently performing genetic studies to distinguish mechanisms that drive prostate cancer development in men with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). His research aims to identify the specific factors underlying prostate cancer and IBD to uncover the mechanisms that may drive carcinogenesis in this inflammatory condition. In this podcast, Dr. Kundu explains approach to screening, diagnosing and treating this unique combination of conditions. Listen here>>

Select Publications

Hudnall MT, Desai AS, Tsai KP, Weiner AB, Vo AX, Ko OS, Jan S, Schaeffer EM, Kundu SD. It's all in the name: Does nomenclature for indolent prostate cancer impact management and anxiety? Cancer. 2021 Sep; 127(18): 3354-3360.

Goldberg IP, Chang SL, Kundu SD, Chung BI, Singer EA. Impact of inflammatory bowel disease on radical prostatectomy outcomes and costs of care. Prostate Int. 2021 Jun; 9(2): 66-71.

Desai AS, Sagar V, Lysy B, Weiner AB, Ko OS, Driscoll C, Rodriguez Y, Vatapalli R, Unno K, Han H, Cohen JE, Vo AX, Pham M, Shin M, Jain-Poster K, Ross J, Morency EG, Meyers TJ, Witte JS, Wu J, Abdulkadir SA, Kundu SD. Inflammatory bowel disease induces inflammatory and pre-neoplastic changes in the prostate. Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2021 May 25.

Meyers TJ, Weiner AB, Graff RE, Desai AS, Cooley LF, Catalona WJ, Hanauer SB, Wu JD, Schaeffer EM, Abdulkadir SA, Kundu SD, Witte JS. Association between inflammatory bowel disease and prostate cancer: A large-scale, prospective, population-based study. International Journal of Cancer. 2020 Jan.

Burns JA, Weiner AB, Catalona WJ, Li EV, Schaeffer EM, Hanauer SB, Strong S, Burns J, Hussain MHA, Kundu SD. Inflammatory Bowel Disease and the Risk of Prostate Cancer. European Urology. 2019 May.

Weiner AB, Tsai KP, Keeter MK, Victorson DE, Schaeffer EM, Catalona WJ, Kundu SD. The Influence of Decision Aids on Prostate Cancer Screening Preferences: A Randomized Survey Study. Journal of Urology. 2018 Nov.

 Joshua Meeks Lab

Investigating genetic and epigenetic changes in bladder cancer, as well as immuno-oncology in bladder cancer

Research Description

The Meeks lab is investigating the epigenetics and genetic mutations associated with cancer biology. Specifically, he is studying how chromatin remodeling genes play a role in bladder cancer. In addition, he is investigating the “driver mutations found in bladder cancer. In the future, he hopes to develop novel systemic and intravesical therapies to improve survival of patients with bladder cancer.

In the United States, there are an estimated 72,570 new cases of bladder cancer each year. Dr. Meeks is conducting innovative research to increase our understanding of the biology of bladder cancer and to identify new therapies and technologies for bladder cancer in order to improve quality of life for our patients. In this podcast, Joshua Meeks, MD, PhD, shares how his team of scientists are involved in three active trials focused on genetic and epigenetic changes in bladder cancer, as well as immuno-oncology in bladder cancer. Listen here >>

Dr. Meeks is investigating the gender disparities in bladder cancer by dissecting the tumor and immune mechanisms of resistance to chemotherapy and immunotherapy. This research may translate into novel pathways and potential therapeutic targets to improve outcomes and reduce gender disparities in bladder cancer. In this video, Meeks shares details about his work. Watch here >>

Select Publications

Folgosa Cooley L, Weiner AB, Meng X, Woldu SL, Meeks JJ, Lotan Y. Survival by T Stage for Patients with Localized Bladder Cancer: Implications for Future Screening Trials. Bladder Cancer. 2021 Jan; 7(1): 23-31.

Meeks JJ, Robertson AG. Immune Signatures Dominate Molecular Subtyping to Predict Response to Neoadjuvant Immunotherapy. European Urology. June 2020.

Robertson AG, Groeneveld CS, Jordan B, Lin X, McLaughlin KA, Das A, Fall LA, Fantini D, Taxter TJ, Mogil LS, Lindskrog SV, Dyrskjøt L, McConkey DJ, Svatek RS, de Reyniès A, Castro MAA, Meeks JJ. Identification of Differential Tumor Subtypes of T1 Bladder Cancer. European Urology. January 2020.

Fantini D, Glaser AP, Rimar KJ, Wang Y, Schipma M, Varghese N, Rademaker A, Behdad A, Yellapa A, Yu Y, Sze CC, Wang L, Zhao Z, Crawford SE, Hu D, Licht JD, Collings CK, Bartom E, Theodorescu D, Shilatifard A, Meeks JJ. A Carcinogen-induced mouse model recapitulates the molecular alterations of human muscle invasive bladder cancer. Oncogene. April 2018.

Refer to PubMed for a full list of publications. 

Contact

Email Dr. Meeks

Phone 312-695-8146

 C. Shad Thaxton Lab

Fabricating new nanomaterials and translational nanotechnology with regard to nanoparticle-based molecular diagnostics and nanotherapeutics.

Research Description

Shad Thaxton MD, PhD, invented, synthesized, and characterized the first biomimetic high-density lipoprotein nanoparticles. High density lipoproteins (HDLs) are natural nanoparticles that circulate in the human body to carry cholesterol. Cholesterol carried by HDLs is often referred to as “good cholesterol” because HDL blood levels inversely correlate with the development of cardiovascular disease. The Thaxton Group utilizes a gold nanoparticle scaffold to assemble the natural surface chemical components of HDLs to create synthetic HDL nanoparticles. The HDL nanoparticles recapitulate the size, shape, surface chemistry, and cholesterol binding properties of natural HDLs. As such, The Thaxton Lab is using these unique biomimetic materials to better understand the structure-function properties of natural HDLs and also as potential therapies for atherosclerosis and heart disease.

For more information, see the faculty profile of  C. Shad Thaxton, MD, PhD

Publications

View Dr. Thaxton's other publications at PubMed

Contact

Email Dr. Thaxton

Phone 312-503-1826

Lab Staff

Post-doctoral Fellows

Nick Angeloni, Kannan Mutharasan, Jonathan Rink

Graduate Students

Kaylin M. McMahon, Michael Plebanek, Sushant Tripathy, Andrea Luthi

Research Technician

Amritha Singh

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