David Haussler on Cancer Short Term Goals
  David Haussler     Biography    
Recorded: 08 May 2012

Short-term we’re going to start finding new molecular indicators for cancer that are associated with disease outcome and response to treatment and this is a process that can happen rapidly over the next few years so we can improve our use especially of the targeted cancer therapies. So what is happening now is increasingly we are adding to the normal chemotherapeutic and radiation treatments and additional targeted therapy so that your doctor can increasingly say ‘Well, your cancer, you have a particular mutation, let’s say a mutation in the gene-b rath that we have a drug for and that added to your normal routine will give you a better response.’ And if we can actually come up with a larger and larger collection of specific molecular changes in your cancer, that are targetable by particular therapies, then it will improve treatment and this should happen gradually for a special type of cancer. There is no one size – one size fits all treatment for cancer that’s going to be appropriate. So what’s going to happen is different subtypes will be conquered one at a time and will chip away at the disease until we have a massive library of options that then covers the majority of cancer cases.

David Haussler (born 1953) is an American bioinformatician known for his work leading the team that assembled the first human genome sequence in the race to complete the Human Genome Project and subsequently for comparative genome analysis that deepens understanding the molecular function and evolution of the genome. He is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, professor of biomolecular engineering and director of the Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering at the University of California, Santa Cruz, director of the California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences (QB3) on the UC Santa Cruz campus, and a consulting professor at Stanford University School of Medicine and UC San Francisco Biopharmaceutical Sciences Department.