“It’s fascinating, the way the presence of one single protein can decrease the toxicity levels of a drug. Some therapies that help destroy tumors can also be harmful to healthy cells. The proteins that transport these drugs into the cell can affect this toxicity. I investigated how we can find out under which circumstances a certain type of drug is or isn’t toxic in mice. I compared the drug concentration in a group of mice producing a certain transport protein, to that in a group of special “knock-out” mice that don’t produce this protein. We now have a better understanding of the ways in which we can lower the toxicity of a functional drug. It was a great experience for me to be able to work in the Netherlands from my homeland, China. I greatly enjoyed my collaborations with colleagues at the Netherlands Cancer Institute and their willingness to help out. After obtaining my PhD I will continue to do oncological research as a postdoc in Cambridge.”
Wenlong will defend his thesis on December 15.