Chen Lab

Chemical Biology
Development and Application of Chemical Biology Methods for the Study of Cancer Progression and Metastasis

Assistant Professor
BA 2001, Wellesley College, PhD 2010, California Institute of Technology, DOD-BCRP Postdoctoral Fellow 2010-2013, University of California, Berkeley

745C LGRT B
413-545-4770

501-504 LGRT A (lab)
413-545-9619

farkas[at]chem.umass.edu


Principal Research Interests

Research in the Farkas group involves the development and use of molecular tools in order to study, image, and treat cancer subtypes. Significant advances have been made in understanding and treating cancer, however, there remain many unknowns, especially in the arena of how and why particular diseases become aggressive and metastasize. Investigating these aspects begins with the generation of platforms that enable the detection and tracking of biological processes, followed by perturbation and study of those systems with small molecules.

Our work occurs at the interface of chemistry and cancer biology, and spans multiple disciplines, Including chemical biology, synthetic chemistry, cell biology, and molecular imaging.

Our projects are broadly based in three different areas: (1) correlation of cancer aggression and altered circadian rhythms by generating reporters to follow rhythms and using small drug-like molecules to modify them; (2) studies of the associations of macrophages and cancer by tracking changes in macrophage subtype, and development of macrophage-based agents for imaging and drug delivery; (3) generation of new delivery systems for nucleic acid and small molecule therapeutics using gold and fatty-acid nanoassemblies (collaborating with the Rotello group). All of our research is intended to not only provide additional understanding of the disease, but to develop new means to diagnose and treat it.

Farkas research image

 
Chemistry