Department of Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine

Gastrointestinal Cellular Stress Group

Cellular stresses (e.g., hormones, inflammation, hypoxia, and chemotherapy) can contribute to disturbed differentiation, carcinogenesis and treatment resistance in cancer cells. One of the hallmarks of cancer development is the evasion of apoptosis (cell death) in response to stress stimuli.

The hormone gastrin is important for normal maintenance of the gastric mucosa. Our research group has shown that gastrin regulates expression of several proteins that regulate the balance between cellular survival and apoptosis.

To modulate the outcome of cellular stress responses in cancer cells, a better understanding of these responses in normal, precancerous and cancer cells is needed, both from a molecular and clinical perspective.

We use a translational research approach, seeking to answer basic molecular questions in gastric cells, and continue with pre-clinical application using animal-modeling and human materials.

Our main objective is to define how prolonged cellular stress and disturbance in differentiation influence carcinogenesis, which eventually might be exploited to aid diagnosis and treatment.

Gastric mucosa with the putative stem/progenitor cell marker ASPM associated with cancer


Photos: Gastric mucosa with the putative stem/progenitor cell marker ASPM associated with cancer.

Research projects

  • Molecular mechanisms of cellular stress responses in gastric cancer and their therapeutic implications
  • Dissecting the roles of ASPM and Clusterin in gastric oxyntic mucosa – from immature stem cells to metaplastic chief cells
  • Development of powerful tools in molecular pathology, like confocal imaging of multiple immunofluorescent labeling of formalin fixed paraffin-embedded tissue sections and laser microdissection with subsequent high-capacity-omics analyses.