Michael J. Spinella

Associate Professor, Comparative BIosciences

Michael Spinella, PhD, joined the Department of Comparative Biosciences and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in August 2016 as an Associate Professor and is a member of the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology in the Anticancer Discovery from Pets to People theme. After receiving his PhD in Biochemistry in 1992 from Albany Medical College, Dr. Spinella performed training fellowships in Cancer Biology and Molecular Therapeutics at the Massey Cancer Center in Richmond, VA and at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. He was a member of the faculty in the Department of Pharmacology at Dartmouth Medical School and a member of the Norris Cotton Cancer Center from 1999-2016.

Dr. Spinella’s laboratory is focused on the molecular genetics of cancer, especially in the areas of mechanisms of tumorigenesis, cancer therapy and drug resistance. One research focus is on uncovering mechanisms that account for the curability of metastatic testicular germ cell tumors in order to inform novel therapeutic strategies for advanced somatic solid tumors including glioblastoma and breast cancer. Other interests include the concept of differentiation therapy and the identification of mechanistic links between stem cell pluripotency, cancer and response to chemotherapy.


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