Dr. Faye M. Johnson
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology
The research in the Johnson laboratory integrates laboratory and clinical work to define the biological and molecular effects of the modulation of signal transduction pathways in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). We have identified novel mechanisms of sensitivity and resistance to kinase inhibitors including polo-like kinase 1 (PLK1), Src, and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway inhibitors. We have demonstrated the ability to translate our laboratory work to the clinic with several clinical trials of c-Src inhibitors. Additionally, the Johnson laboratory was the first study to establish a therapeutic vulnerability of NOTCH1-mutant HNSCC to any class of drugs leading to the initiation of a clinical trial testing a PI3K/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitor in NOTCH1-mutant HNSCC (NCT03740100).