Department of Clinical Research (DCR)

Research Groups

RNA & Cancer (NCCR RNA & Disease)

The human genome contains tens of thousands of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) of unknown function. From the relatively small number of studied cases, it appears that these molecules can perform regulatory functions in both the nucleus and cytoplasm, by interacting with proteins, DNA and other RNAs. Most importantly, there is mounting evidence that lncRNAs are central to many disease processes, making them promising new therapeutic targets.

Our laboratory aims to discover and understand the role of these enigmatic molecules in human diseases, particularly cancer. We aim to do this by combining bioinformatic and experimental approaches. Recently we have created experimental tools based on CRISPR-Cas9 to screen for disease-associated lncRNAs. We are also working on bioinformatic methods to discover cancer-driver lncRNAs by analysis of tumour mutations. Our team participates in the PanCancer Analysis of Whole Genomes (PCAWG) consortium, and in the GENCODE lncRNA annotation project. The lab is supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) through the National Center of Competence in Research (NCCR) “RNA & Disease”.

You can find more information about us on our laboratory website.