About this Research Thrust

Through cancer biology research, the Department of Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital is developing breakthroughs on the underlying mechanisms of cancer—including the growth, spread and maintenance of cancer cells—to inform cutting-edge treatments.

Laboratories and Researchers

Irit Adini, PhD

Irit Adini, PhD, is an investigator at the Mass General Center for Engineering in Medicine & Surgery. Dr. Adini's research focuses on the role of the melanocytic microenvironment in tissue neovascularization-dependent disorders and inflammatory skin disorders, such as age-related macular degeneration, cancer and connective tissue diseases.

Learn more

Boland Laboratory

The Boland Laboratory, led by Genevieve Boland, MD, PhD, focuses on blood-based techniques for assessing changes in the tumor microenvironment through analysis of circulating exosomes.

Learn more

Cusack Laboratory

Research topics in the Cusack Laboratory, led by James Cusack, MD, include molecular targeted therapies for colorectal cancer, melanoma, Merkel cell cancer and carcinomatosis, and improving delivery of surgical cancer care in resource-limited settings.

Learn more

Head and Neck Translational Immuno-Oncology Research Laboratory

The Head and Neck Translational Immuno-Oncology Research Laboratory, led by Sara Pai, MD, PhD, is to rapidly translate innovative, biomarker-driven immunotherapies that have the potential to improve treatment outcomes for patients with head and neck cancer.

Learn more

Hughes Laboratory

The goal of the Hughes Laboratory, led by Kevin Hughes, MD, is to use human and artificial intelligence to collate, annotate and organize the world's literature on hereditary cancer in order to make it easily accessible, understandable and actionable for clinicians to maximize the quality of care for patients.

Learn more

N. Murat Karabacak, PhD

N. Murat Karabacak, PhD, is an investigator at the Center for Engineering in Medicine & Surgery. Dr. Karabacak’s work is at the interface of mass spectrometry, microfluidics and medicine. 

Learn more

Liss Laboratory

The Liss Laboratory, led by Andrew Liss, PhD, is interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms that contribute to pancreatic cancer.

Learn more

Maheswaran Laboratory

Research topics in the Maheswaran Laboratory, led by Shyamala Maheswaran, PhD, include tumorigenesis, breast cancer and cancer genetics.

Learn more

Oncolytic Virus Research Laboratory

The Oncolytic Virus Research Laboratory, led by Howard Kaufman, MD, FACS, seeks to understand how oncolytic viruses, a new class of tumor immunotherapy or cancer treatment, mediate antitumor activity.

Learn more

Pancreatic Biology Research Laboratory

The focus of the basic and translational laboratory efforts is the molecular mechanisms underlying the initiation, progression and maintenance of pancreatic disease and cancer, specifically the contribution of developmental genes.

Learn more

Tanabe Laboratory

Research topics in the Tanabe Laboratory, led by Kenneth Tanabe, MD, include hepatobiliary cancer, epidermal growth factor and hepatocellular carcinoma.

Learn more

Thyroid Cancer Research Laboratory

The main focus of the Thyroid Cancer Research Laboratory, led by Sareh Parangi, MD, is to study certain key genetic and epigenetic changes seen more frequently in those patients who do poorly, and find out how exactly these genetic changes lead to more aggressive cancer behavior in those patients.

Learn more

Wang Laboratory

The Wang Laboratory, led by Xinhui Wang, MD, PhD, is focused on two major research initiatives: targeting cancer stem cells and immunotherapy for cancers.

Learn more