The Kinsey Laboratory is interested in combining targeted therapies with autophagy inhibition in pancreatic and gastrointestinal cancers for rapid translation to patients. Dr. Kinsey published a manuscript describing the synergistic cytotoxicity of combining MEK1/2 and autophagy inhibition in RAS/RAF mutated cancers and is the primary investigator of two investigator-initiated clinical trials for pancreatic and gastrointestinal cancers resulting from this work.
Targeted therapies have been successful in some malignancies; however, a vast majority of cancers do not respond to predicted vulnerabilities. We have demonstrated that these non-responsive malignancies likely activate protective mechanisms such as autophagy, which result in primary resistance. Dr. Kinsey’s laboratory works with cancer-derived cell lines, patient-derived organoids, and patient-derived xenograft models to evaluate the mechanistic, diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic potential of novel targeted combinations.