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In Their Own Words: Paul Tran

Photo by Giovanna Fabbri
Paul Tran, 20 years old, Genomic Medicine Graduate Program, 1st Year MD/PhD Student

Genes as a potential treatment for renal cancer

“Believe it or not, I changed my main research focus last week, and I went from the awesome abstract to the amazing data. I was curious about why some patients will survive a very long time when diagnosed with renal cancer and why some won’t. We found that the poor prognosis patients exhibit higher expression levels of some specific genes that we were analyzing compared to the better prognosis ones. But what I’m looking at right now is how we can use the data available online to identify if each patient will survive a long time. So potentially, we can identify patients that usually would have a worse prognosis and treat them. What is so unique about this research is that it may be possible to treat these patients with what are considered lower chances of survival, which doesn’t happen today. This is what I want to continue working on for the rest of my PhD. That’s the kind of research I love to be doing because I can help patients.”

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