NCI-Designated Cancer Center at Sanford Burnham Prebys

One of only seven National Cancer Institute-designated Basic Laboratory Cancer Centers in the nation.
Cancer Center researchers

Taking aim at cancer

“Our Cancer Center is committed to performing impactful translational multi-disciplinary research that addresses unmet clinical needs relevant to the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.”

– Ze'ev Ronai, Ph.D., Center Director

Director's Statement


Achieving our goals through collaboration

Our scientists are always looking for novel ideas, partners and new ways of doing groundbreaking research to target cancer.


Tumor Initiation and Maintenance Program

Understanding the cells that give rise to tumors and the signals allowing them to expand uncontrollably will help us learn how to defeat cancer.

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Cell and Molecular Biology of Cancer Program

Insights into the complex system of networks and mechanisms that tumors use to survive and proliferate will lead us to tumor-specific, less toxic therapies.

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Aging, Cancer and Immuno-oncology Program

We are studying the interplay among cancer cells, immune cells and their environment to put the brakes on cancer.

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Latest news


PRMT5 control of cGAS/STING and NLRC5 pathways defines melanoma response to antitumor immunity.

Kim H, Kim H, Feng Y, Li Y, Tamiya H, Tocci S, Ronai ZA

Sci Transl Med 2020 Jul 8 ;12(551)

Inhibition of Nuclear Pore Complex Formation Selectively Induces Cancer Cell Death.

Sakuma S, Raices M, Borlido J, Guglielmi V, Zhu EYS, D'Angelo MA

Cancer Discov 2021 Jan ;11(1):176-193

Golgi Acidification by NHE7 Regulates Cytosolic pH Homeostasis in Pancreatic Cancer Cells.

Galenkamp KMO, Sosicka P, Jung M, Recouvreux MV, Zhang Y, Moldenhauer MR, Brandi G, Freeze HH, Commisso C

Cancer Discov 2020 Jun ;10(6):822-835

Targeted Delivery of Epidermal Growth Factor to the Human Placenta to Treat Fetal Growth Restriction.

Renshall LJ, Beards F, Evangelinos A, Greenwood SL, Brownbill P, Stevens A, Sibley CP, Aplin JD, Johnstone ED, Teesalu T, Harris LK

Pharmaceutics 2021 Oct 25 ;13(11)

ecDNA hubs drive cooperative intermolecular oncogene expression.

Hung KL, Yost KE, Xie L, Shi Q, Helmsauer K, Luebeck J, Schöpflin R, Lange JT, Chamorro González R, Weiser NE, Chen C, Valieva ME, Wong IT, Wu S, Dehkordi SR, Duffy CV, Kraft K, Tang J, Belk JA, Rose JC, Corces MR, Granja JM, Li R, Rajkumar U, Friedlein J, Bagchi A, Satpathy AT, Tjian R, Mundlos S, Bafna V, Henssen AG, Mischel PS, Liu Z, Chang HY

Nature 2021 Nov 24 ;

Inhibitors of the Hippo Pathway Kinases STK3/MST2 and STK4/MST1 Have Utility for the Treatment of Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

Bata N, Chaikuad A, Bakas NA, Limpert AS, Lambert LJ, Sheffler DJ, Berger LM, Liu G, Yuan C, Wang L, Peng Y, Dong J, Celeridad M, Layng F, Knapp S, Cosford NDP

J Med Chem 2021 Nov 22 ;

PLEKHA7 signaling is necessary for the growth of mutant KRAS driven colorectal cancer.

Jeung HC, Puentes R, Aleshin A, Indarte M, Correa RG, Bankston LA, Layng FIAL, Ahmed Z, Wistuba I, Yao Y, Duenas DG, Zhang S, Meuillet EJ, Marassi F, Liddington RC, Kirkpatrick L, Powis G

Exp Cell Res 2021 Nov 17 ;409(2):112930

New Tools for Streamlined In Vivo Homing Peptide Identification.

Põšnograjeva K, Pleiko K, Haugas M, Teesalu T

Methods Mol Biol 2022 ;2383:385-412

A systematic genome-wide mapping of oncogenic mutation selection during CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing.

Sinha S, Barbosa K, Cheng K, Leiserson MDM, Jain P, Deshpande A, Wilson DM 3rd, Ryan BM, Luo J, Ronai ZA, Lee JS, Deshpande AJ, Ruppin E

Nat Commun 2021 Nov 11 ;12(1):6512

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