Young Research Talent award for Marieke Kuijjer
Group Leader, Dr. Marieke Kuijjer, awarded funding from the Research Council of Norway (Forskningsrådet)
Dr. Marieke Kuijjer, head of the Computational Biology and Systems Medicine Group. Photo: Oda Hveem.
NCMM congratulates Dr. Kuijjer, head of the Computational Biology and Systems Medicine group, on her Young Research Talent award.
Dr. Kuijjer was awarded 7.9mNOK for her project, ‘Large-scale personalized omics networks to model the disruption of gene regulation in cancer’ as part of the Research Council of Norway’s annual call for ‘Free project support’ (FRIPRO) in December 2020.
Describing the project aims, Dr Kuijjer comments:
“In the past decade, new technologies like next-generation sequencing have been widely applied to study cancer. This research has led to a greater understanding in terms of gene expression, mutations, and methylation profiles in a wide variety of cancer types. However, these approaches have not had a major impact on patient outcomes.
“We know that to understand what drives cancer and to identify new biomarkers and therapeutic targets, we need to better integrate multiple ‘omics data types.
This will help us to gain greater insight into the molecular interactions that occur in the development and progression of the disease.”
The project builds on two of the group's recently published computational tools, which model transcriptional and post-transcriptional gene regulatory interactions for individual samples in large-scale gene regulatory networks by integrating transcription factor and miRNA binding with target gene co-expression information. The project proposes to develop new frameworks to analyze these large-scale networks, as well as advanced computational tools to integrate them with other data types, including somatic mutations and clinical features.
The project ultimately aims to advance the field of precision network medicine, improve the understanding of gene regulation in cancer, and identify the underlying biological mechanisms that drive cancer development, progression, and how the disease presents in different patients.
About the Young Research Talent grant
The Young Research Talent grants are designed to help researchers in the earlier stages of their career who have already demonstrated the ability to conduct research of high scientific quality. The funding is designed to allow these talented researchers the opportunity to continue to pursue their research ideas and to lead a research project.