BJ's research focuses on the mechanism by which a cancer drug currently in development for solid tumors dramatically - and unexpectedly - shifts the metabolism of cancer cells towards aerobic glycolysis. By defining which tumors might be susceptible to this inadvertent metabolic reprogramming, we hope to contribute to more effective and more informed treatment decisions.
Before matriculating at UCLA, BJ spent summers in the intramural research program at the NIH campus in Bethesda: in the Laboratory of Mitochondrial Biology and Metabolism investigating the effect of calorie restriction on enzymes involved in the citric acid cycle; and in the Clinical Endocrinology Branch applying quantitative methods to a large-scale obesity phenotyping project. His senior thesis, written under the mentorship of then university president Shirley Tilghman, explored the ways in which our understanding of the genetic underpinnings of obesity has delineated novel treatment opportunities.
As part of a certificate program in Global Health & Health Policy, he also conducted an independent epidemiological surveillance project on chronic disease in war-ravaged Kono District, Sierra Leone.
AB, Molecular Biology, Princeton University