Research Program Overview
After obtaining his medical degree and board certification in Clinical Immunology from the University of Leipzig, Germany, Siegfried Janz joined the Laboratory of Genetics at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in Bethesda, Maryland, to perform studies on the natural history of malignant tumors derived from terminally differentiated, immunoglobulin-producing B lymphocytes called plasma cells. The nearly 20-year tenure at the NCI deepened his fascination with fundamental and translational research into B cell and plasma cell neoplasms.
In 2007, Siegfried Janz relocated his laboratory to The University of Iowa, where he is currently working on two NCI-supported projects. The first one, funded by 2R01CA151354 and entitled “Biological validation of candidate myeloma genes,” attempts to further our understanding of genetic pathways underlying malignant plasma cell transformation. The second project – supported by 1R21CA187388 – seeks to validate the transcription factor FOXM1 as a therapeutic target in high-risk myeloma. The long-term goal of this effort is to improve the survival of the subset of myeloma patients that exhibits particularly aggressive disease.
Additionally, Siegfried Janz serves as a subcontractor on a project, 1R01CA214246, that has been developed by Dr. Alan Lichtenstein, UCLA. It concerns the mechanism by which the ribonucleoprotein, hnRNP A1, regulates the translation of the cellular oncogene, MYC, in multiple myeloma cells. Last but not least, he is the principal investigator of a pilot study sponsored by Pharmacyclics LLC, Sunnyvale, CA, aimed at determining the efficacy with which a small-drug inhibitor of Bruton’s tyrosine kinase inhibits myeloma-like tumors in transgenic mice.