IICD Newsletter March 2023

March 06, 2023
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March 6th, 2023
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Women's History Month:
IICD Spotlight Scientists
montage including headshots of all woman scientists at the IICD
In honor of Women’s History Month, we are highlighting the outstanding scientists who are part of IICD. They share about their journey in STEM, the challenges they encounter and their proudest achievements. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram throughout the month of March.
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Next Speaker in the IICD Seminar Series
Headshot of Trevor Graham
Inferring the Drivers of Cancer Evolution
of a Tumour-by-Tumour Basis

Hosted by Simon Tavaré, FRS
Date: March 15, 2022 at 2 PM (ET)
Location: Schermerhorn Hall 603
and via Zoom

Light refreshments will be served

Click here to learn more and register
The IICD Welcomes Stephanie Velasquez, New Chief of Staff
I have over 18 years of experience in organizational development, human resources, executive management, and departmental operations. I enjoy problem-solving to ensure the organization's operations run smoothly. I often like to take a step back to be able to look at the bigger picture from a fresh angle or perspective, allowing me to execute new effective solutions. However, I believe it is important to have high morale and develop strong working relationships to maintain a high level of productivity and be successful in the workplace. I applied these approaches in my previous position(s) at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and was able to streamline operations and enhance team effectiveness. I also understand the many challenges that some students face as a first-generation college graduate. I obtained my graduate degree in Public Administration with a focus in Non-profit Management from the University of New Haven, in Connecticut, where I currently reside. I pursued my degree while also working as a full-time Administrator and raising my daughter. I was born and raised on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, a few blocks away from Columbia University’s main campus. I enjoy getting a global perspective through traveling, reading books, and listening to podcasts about history, finance and investment, true crime, and personal/career development. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, friends, and dog and prioritize fitness.  I am excited to be a new member of the Irving Institute for Cancer Dynamics!
Stephanie Velasquez
Headshots of Elham Azizi Congratulations to IICD faculty Elham Azizi who recently received an R01 grant from the NIH for her project "Machine learning methods for interpreting spatial multi-omics data." The project aims to unlock novel insights about the spatial organization of cell types, their interactions, and mechanisms in multiple biological systems.
Headshots of Yvon Woappi and Bianca Dumitrascu Yvon Woappi and IICD member Bianca Dumitrascu were awarded a 2023 Data Science Institute Seed grant for their project “Interventional Representation Learning for Intelligent Wound Healing Strategies” to study wound healing through the development of interventional functional genomic tools, machine learning-powered gene target identification, and experiments.
Headshots of Siyu He Siyu He, a graduate student in Elham Azizi's lab, is presenting at the American Physical Society March Meeting 2023. Her talk on “topological defects induced by MSC-cancer interaction correlate with cancer cell apoptosis” will provide physical insights with molecular perspectives on the interactive motility of stem cells and cancer cells.
Headshot of Sohrab Salehi Congratulations to Sohrab Salehi (Shah/Blei/Rudin labs) who received a K99 award for his project “Causal determinants of drug resistance and metastasis in cancer with multimodal single cell data” to develop a new class of scalable statistical models that will help identify causal determinants of treatment failure in different cancer types.
Illustration of the endoplasmic reticulum of a cell undergoing ferroptosis. Ilustration by Nicoletta Barolini. Brent Stockwell recently published a study in Nature Chemical Biology which identifies the part of the cell that drives ferroptosis, a form of cell death that shows promise for treating disease. The finding could help scientists design better, more targeted therapeutics that induce or stop ferroptosis in order to treat life-threatening illnesses like cancer. Read more.
Headshot of Zijin Xiang Zijin Xiang, a Master student in Statistics, has joined Dr. Dinh’s Lab this Spring. She completed her BS in Applied Mathematics at UC San Diego. With a keen interest in mathematical models and statistical inference, Zijin is focused on developing the model and parameter inference of cancer development that can be applied to single-cell DNA data.
Recent Publications from IICD Researchers
Fisher’s Measure of Variability in Repeated Samples. da Silva, P. H.; Jamshidpey, A.; McCullagh, P.; Tavaré, S. Bernoulli 2023, 29 (2), 1166-1194.

Identification of Essential Sites of Lipid Peroxidation in Ferroptosis. von Krusenstiern, A. N.; Robson, R. N.; Qian, N.; Qiu, B.; Hu, F.; Reznik, E.; Smith, N.; Zandkarimi, F.; Estes, V. M.; Dupont, M.; Hirschhorn, T.; Shchepinov, M. S.; Min, W.; Woerpel, K. A.; Stockwell, B. R. Nat Chem Biol 2023, in press.
NRF2 Controls Iron Homeostasis and Ferroptosis through HERC2 and VAMP8. Anandhan, A.; Dodson, M.; Shakya, A.; Chen, J.; Liu, P.; Wei, Y.; Tan, H.; Wang, Q.; Jiang, Z.; Yang, K.; Garcia, J. G.; Chambers, S. K.; Chapman, E.; Ooi, A.; Yang-Hartwich, Y.; Stockwell, B. R.; Zhang, D. D. Sci. Adv. 2023, 9 (5).

Reconstructing Clonal Tree for Phylo-Phenotypic Characterization of Cancer Using Single-Cell Transcriptomics. Jun, S. H.; Toosi, H.; Mold, J.; Engblom, C.;Chen, X.;  O'Flanagan, C.; Hagemann-Jensen, M.; Sandberg, R.; Aparicio, S.; Hartman, J.; Roth, A.; Lagergren, J. Nat Commun 2023, 14 (1), 982.

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