I have devoted my professional life to understanding what makes cells become cancerous and how to turn that knowledge into the best possible treatments. I seek to empower my patients with knowledge about their disease and its treatments. For me, it is a privilege to provide cancer care and I strive to help patients realize their best possible quality of life.
Shelby’s research has been focused on drug sensitivity profiling and finding new potentially effective drugs in multiple myeloma patient bone marrow samples. She is also beginning to investigate myeloma minimal residual disease populations by flow sorting and RNA-sequencing methods to better understand how myeloma persists through treatment. Shelby is particularly interested in interfacing wet lab techniques with computational biology. For example, she has been developing an R-studio pipeline for faster in-depth analysis of patient drug sensitivity profiles. Shelby studied biology at the University of Iowa and worked as a research assistant in endocrinology after graduation. Ultimately, she plans to complete graduate training in bioinformatics. In her free time, she enjoys going into the mountains, hanging out with friends and playing with her scruffy dog, Joey.
Lorraine’s research is focused on studying mechanisms of drug resistance in myeloma, particularly acquired resistance to immunomodulatory drugs (IMiDs). She has established an intracellular protein flow cytometry-based platform to measure the downstream effects of IMiDs in multiple myeloma patient samples to classify how resistance occurs. Lorraine graduated from Seattle University in Cell and Molecular Biology with a minor in Chemistry. Her undergraduate research projects involved the structural/functional characterization of DNA recognition and cleavage specificity in homing endonucleases and developing a next-generation sequencing platform to study how human land use impacts urban carnivores. She also worked as an intern at Seattle Genetics in quantitative pharmacology of antibody-drug conjugates. After graduation, Lorraine joined the Cancer Biology PhD program at CU. Outside the lab, she enjoys painting and drawing, outdoor water activities, and spending time with friends and family.
Beau’s research is focused on the development of rationale drug combinations designed for patients with advanced multiple myeloma. For this, he first uses cell line and patient samples to define mechanistic synergy and follows this up with testing using in vivo xenograft models of myeloma. Prior to joining the lab, Beau studied German and economics at Colorado College, then completed post-baccalaureate pre-medical coursework at UC Denver and engaged multiple healthcare volunteer pursuits. Beau is currently applying to medical school, with the ultimate goal to pursue oncology or surgery. In his free time, Beau enjoys cycling, rock climbing, and baking.
Olivia Perez de Acha Lopez comes to us from Madrid, Spain. She recently received her MD from Universidad Autonoma de Madrid. Her past research was done at the Hospital Puerta de Hierro studying TKI drug resistance in liquid biopsies from patients with EGFR+ lung adenocarcinoma. Before joining us at CU, Olivia also spent last summer at the NIH studying exosomes as potential biomarkers in Alzheimer's Disease. In our group, she is beginning to evaluate CD46 and other immunotherapy targets on multiple myeloma minimal residual disease. Her goal is to ultimately become a Hematologist/Oncologist, and is preparing for the 2021 residency match in the U.S. In her free time, Olivia is a prolific traveler, having volunteered in underserved communities in diverse locations including Cuba, New Zealand, Indonesia and Cambodia. She is also a "crazy skier”, and has the goal to visit all ski resorts in North America.
Zach’s current research is on the development of a new therapeutic drug class for multiple myeloma patients. Zach is also our lab manager and his technical expertise spans the variety of techniques we use, including multiparameter flow cytometry and in vivo models of myeloma. Prior to coming to the University of Colorado, Zach worked at Northwestern University’s Center for Innovation in Global Health Technologies in Chicago, where he helped develop molecular point-of-care diagnostics for HIV and TB. He received a master’s degree in biology from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, for which he focused on the characterization of bacterial and fungal soil communities. In his free time, Zach loves to explore Colorado’s numerous outdoor activities including cycling and mountain biking, as well as spending time with family.