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Cancer Epigenetics NCI Funded Training Program

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T32 Summary

The objective of the Cancer Epigenetics training program is to offer postdoctoral fellows a sophisticated, scientific environment with multidisciplinary expertise encompassing epigenetics and cancer. The proposed program will provide trainees with the ideal platform for successful careers as scientists, physicians, scientific administrators, and entrepreneurs who will identify novel agents and devices to treat cancer.


We have assembled a team of Sylvester members who will serve as mentors for this program. All mentors are currently supported by R01 and/or R01 equivalent funding. Their research expertise, while centered in cancer epigenetics, spans the areas of hematologic malignancies, carcinogenesis, cancer genomics, cancer biology, signal transduction, drug discovery, cancer control, and bioinformatics. 

Capobianco, Anthony J., Ph.D. - Dr. Capobianco’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in the biochemical studies, validation of epigenetic targets for therapeutic purposes, compound discovery, and mouse models of human cancer.

Chen, Xi (Steven), Ph.D. - Dr. Chen’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in statistical genomics, including epigenomics, and bioinformatics for cancer research.

Cimmino, Luisa, Ph.D. - Dr. Cimmino’s lab will provide trainees with skills to model micronutrient regulation of the epigenome with a focus on developing targeted epigenetic therapies for the treatment of hematopoietic malignancies.

Figueroa, Maria E., M.D. - Dr. Figueroa’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in genome-wide approaches using primary leukemic cells, in vitro and in vivo modeling of these observations and, their translational application to the clinical setting.

Kobetz, Erin, Ph.D. - Dr. Kobetz’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in community-based participatory research, cancer prevention, and health disparities.

Lee, Stephen, Ph.D. - Dr. Lee’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in investigating novel epigenetic mechanisms, such as how lncRNA immobilize proteins in the nucleolus thereby controlling cellular dynamics.

Morey, Lluis, Ph.D. - Dr. Morey will provide trainees with skills in stem cell programming, polycomb biology, and histone modification.

Nimer, Stephen, M.D. - Dr. Nimer’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in exploring novel mechanism implicated in leukemogenesis and develop molecularly targeted therapies with cellular, molecular and epigenetic approaches.

Rao, J Sunil, Ph.D. - Dr. Rao will provide trainees with skills in developing statistical methods for modeling and understanding the genomic and epigenetic determinants of cancer initiation and progression.

Schatz, Jonathan, M.D. - Dr. Schatz’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in the development of new model systems and preclinical therapeutics.

Schürer, Stephan, Ph.D. - Dr. Schürer’s lab provides trainees with a research program that spans computational systems biology to identify relevant target combinations, big data cheminformatics to develop predictors of drug target and physicochemical properties, and computationally driven medicinal chemistry to efficiently synthesize compounds with desirable properties.

Shiekhattar, Ramin, Ph.D. - Dr. Shiekhattar’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in cancer genomics and epigenetics approaches using tumor cells, with a special focus on the role of enhancer function and eRNAs. 

Taylor, Justin, M.D.Dr. Taylor’s lab will provide trainees with skills in understanding the molecular pathophysiology of genetic alterations that drive hematologic neoplasms and how those targets might be leveraged for effective anti-cancer therapy. 

Tuesta, Luis, Ph.D. - Dr. Tuesta’s lab will provide trainees with skills in understanding the epigenetic mechanisms underpinning activation of microglia and how persistent activation of these cells by chemotherapeutic agents can drive cognitive and attentional deficits in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.

Wahlestedt, Claes, Ph.D. - Dr. Wahlestedt’s laboratory will provide trainees with skills in genomics and drug discovery, with a particular focus on epigenetic mechanisms, including non-coding RNAs.

Williams, Sion, Ph.D. - Dr. Williams’ lab provides trainees with an integral experience in next generation sequencing and genomics technology as part of their epigenetics training, which can keep the trainees very competitive in the field.

Yanbin Zhang, Ph.D. - Dr. Zhang’s lab will provide trainees with a strong program in molecular mechanisms of cancer that uniquely bridges the mechanisms in DNA repair pathways and how they interact with epigenetic mechanisms of cancer.

Zheng, Wang, Ph.D. - Dr.  Wang’s lab will provide trainees with skills on 3D reconstruction of genome structures, family classification of topologically associating domains, prediction of protein functions, prediction of protein structures, and analysis of biological complex networks. 

Eligibility Requirements
Please note, all nominees/applicants must meet the following criteria to be considered.

  • Must be a US Citizens or Permanent Resident or a non-citizen national, or must have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence and possess an Alien Registration Receipt Card (1-151 or 1-551) or some other verification of legal admission as a permanent resident.
  • Must be within 4 years of obtaining their Ph.D.
  • M.D.s must be within 4 years of their residency or fellowship
  • Candidates must be available for a Full-time, 12-month appointment and agree to undertake a minimum of two years of research, research training, or comparable experiences from the time of appointment.
  • Must be accepted to a T32 Mentor’s lab

Application Requirements
“In order to apply for this opportunity please identify a mentor from the above list and reach out to them to apply for the position”

  1. 1-2 Letters of recommendation (1 must be from a Ph.D. mentor)
  2. Nomination letter from a T32 mentor. Candidate must identify a T32 specific mentor, and be accepted to their lab in order to qualify (see list of mentors)
  3. Full CV in UM format (please include citizenship status)
  4. 1-2 Goal Statement and Career Development Plan

Please submit applications to

Applications accepted on a rolling basis

James Nieves
Sr. Manager, Programs
Office of Education and Training
University of Miami