Lauren Herron

CRIG member
Lauren Herron

Doctoral Fellow – Molecular Signaling and Cell Death Unit – VIB-UGent Inflammation Research Center – Molecular Skin Biology Group (Faculty of Sciences, UGent)
Principal Investigator: prof. Wim Declercq (PhD)


Research focus

Z-DNA binding protein 1 (ZBP1) is a nucleic acid sensor known to be involved in innate viral immunity as a mediator for apoptosis and necroptosis. The majority of previous studies have focused on ZBP1 in the context of viral immunity. My research focuses on investigating the role of ZBP1 in breast and skin cancer. Recent studies by my group have shown that ZBP1 plays a role in skin inflammation triggered by the sensing of endogenous nucleic acids. It has also been demonstrated that ZBP1 is upregulated in stromal cells and cancer cells.
My work is investigating the possible role and mechanism of the involvement of ZBP1 in tumorigenesis, cancer progression, and its potential as a prognostic marker in skin cancer. 


I obtained a BS in Molecular Genetics from the University of Rochester in 2018, after which I conducted research for over two years as an assistant in the lab of Dr. Angela Christiano at Columbia University focusing on tissue engineering, immunology, and dermatology. After my time at Columbia, I became a full-time doctoral fellow in the lab of Prof. Wim Declercq, researching skin cancer and cell death proteins.

Contact & links