Maaike Van Trimpont
T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) is a type of blood cancer that can be very aggressive and is characterized by the formation of cancerous T-cells. This cancer is treated by standard chemotherapy that can cure 80% of children diagnosed with T-ALL and 50% of the adult cases. However the outcome of T-ALL patients that relapse or seem to be resistant against given therapy remains poor. Also the standard chemotherapy can cause a lot of unwanted side-effects. Therefore, it is important to identify new and better therapies that give rise to less toxic side-effects and better cancer treatment. By studying patient T-ALL samples we try to look at new possible molecular pathways and targets, mainly focusing on cancer escape mechanisms such as the upregulating of anti-apoptotic factors. We also try to investigate why some patients seem to be very resistant against standard chemotherapy and try to come up with new therapeutic targets that can circumvent this chemoresistance.