Jac Alexander Nickoloff, PhD

Jac Alexander Nickoloff, PhD

Colorado State University

Research Project:
Targeting Lethal DNA Damage to Lung Cancer Genome Alterations

Grant Awarded:

  • Lung Cancer Discovery Award

Research Topics:

  • basic biologic mechanisms
  • combination therapies experimental therapeutics
  • gene therapy

Research Disease:

  • lung cancer

Lung cancer is treated with surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and/or targeted therapeutics. Chemo and radiotherapy are not cancer specific and can harm normal tissue. Targeted therapeutics are cancer-specific, but prone to development of resistance. Our research is designed to develop a novel lung cancer treatment strategy that is both cancer-specific and avoids resistance. We will induce lethal DNA damage in cancer-specific DNA sequences, thus protecting normal tissue. A type of DNA damage called double-strand breaks (DSBs) can kill tumor cells. We will repurpose a gene-editing tool, CRISPR, into a tumor cell killing tool, using lung tumor cell and mouse tumor models. Our goal is to treat lung cancer by introducing poorly repaired or irreparable DSBs into lung cancer-specific genome alterations.


We developed new CRISPR tools this year and optimized CRISPR delivery. Our findings have opened new opportunities for CRISPR delivery to tumors in vivo. We established tumor xenografts in mice as we prepare to perform preclinical studies to treat lung tumor xenografts in mice.

Page last updated: November 17, 2022

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