Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer worldwide. With its incidence set to double in less than 20 years, the development of an effective intervention strategy is critical. My research aims to investigate clonal interaction and evolution in colorectal cancer by making use of 3D co-culture models. By culturing, colon organoids, which harbour mutations in the key genes associated with colorectal cancer (Apc, Kras and Tp53), with cells commonly found in the tumour microenvironment, we hope to accurately model the progression of this aggressive cancer and ultimately accelerate our current understanding towards more effective treatments.
I completed my Bachelor of Science (majoring in Human Physiology and Genetics), BMedSc Honours (Immunology and Infectious Diseases) and MMedSc (Clinical Science and Immunology) degrees at the University of Cape Town from 2013 to 2018. My honours and masters projects focused on the effect of soil-transmitted helminths on cervical and colorectal cancer development and progression. In 2022, I completed my DPhil degree in Professor Xin Lu's laboratory at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at the University of Oxford. The aim of my project was to investigate clonal interaction and evolution in colorectal cancer by making use of 3D colon organoids, which harboured mutations in the key genes associated with this cancer type.