dr. Philippe Decruyenaere (MD)
A lymphoma is a hematopoietic malignancy that develops in the lymphoid tissue. The diffuse large-cell B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most common histological subtype within non-hodgkin lymphomas. With the standard treatment consisting of immunochemotherapy, a sustained remission can be obtained in about 60%-70% of the patients. However, patients with refractory disease or who relapse after first-line treatment with immunochemotherapy have a reserved prognosis with a five-year survival rate of only 20%, despite second-line treatments. These important prognostic differences in terms of response and survival may be explained by the fact that DLBCL includes a heterogeneous group of lymphomas in terms of morphology, genetics and biological behavior, which cannot be sufficiently reflected in current classification systems.
The aim of this PhD is to combine DNA and gene expression data and to link these to diagnosis, clinical phenotype and response within a patient population with DLBCL. Through integrated DNA/RNA profiling, the underlying pathogenesis will be further explored in which disease-specific pathways responsible for a particular clinical phenotype will be elaborated in order to select possible therapeutic targets on the one hand and on the other hand to identify diagnostic markers associated with refractory disease or relapse.
A potentially promising application in this research area is the use of circulating cell-free (tumor) DNA (cfDNA/ctDNA) and circulating cell-free (tumor) RNA (cfRNA/ctRNA) to map the molecular tumor profile at diagnosis and to use as a real-time and non-invasive biomarker for follow-up.
I received my medical degree in 2016.
I am currently a resident in internal medicine and hematologist in training. During my residency, I started a PhD fellowship at the OncoRNALab where I would like to combine my medical clinical knowledge with basic science skills.
I have a special interest in cellfree nucleic acid profiling of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in search of diagnostic, prognostic, predictive, and therapeutic biomarkers.