PhD student Jia-Wei Chen wins award for best oral presentation at international workshop around “Adaptation of tumour and its ecosystem to radiotherapies”

Holding a master in biology, Jia-Wei Chen works since 2018 as a PhD student at the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Biology (URBC) within the research group led by Prof. Carine Michiels. Her doctoral thesis aims at determining the genes involved in the resistance of glioblastomas to anticancer therapies. The standard treatment for glioblastoma is surgery, followed by concurrent radiotherapy and temozolomide, and then adjuvant temozolomide. To reach her objective, Jia-Wei used an in vitro model of glioblastoma in which she screened more than 18.000 genes potentially involved in resistance mechanisms by using the CRISPR / Cas9 technique. Her work should allow to better understand by which mechanisms glioblastoma cells respond to treatment and to propose strategies to bypass their intrinsic resistance. Several target genes and groups of genes are currently under validation. The next step will be to assess the implication of these candidate genes in glioblastoma resistance to combined treatment with proton irradiation in comparison to X-rays.

In September 2021, Jia-Wei participated to the fourteenth international workshop organized by the "Tumour targeting, Imaging, radiotherapies network" of the Cancéropôle Grand-Ouest in Le Bono (France). The theme of this year’s workshop was “Adaptation of the tumour and its ecosystem to radiotherapies: Mechanisms, imaging and therapeutic approaches”. This workshop focused on the latest advances in molecular and external beam radiotherapies through a better understanding of adaptation of the tumour and its microenvironment. The abstract submitted by Jia-Wei was one of the 30 abstracts selected for an oral communication and a travel grant. On top of that, her oral presentation was awarded the Best oral presentation prize!