|The Eliopoulos lab receives a grant by the Fondation Santé.
A research proposal by the Eliopoulos team entitled “Epigenetic regulation of damage-induced intestinal stem cell proliferation in Drosophila” was selected for funding by the Fondation Santé.
Chronic inflammatory disorders are often associated with an increased risk of developing cancer. A classic example of the connection between inflammation and cancer is the increased risk of colorectal cancer in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. There is considerable evidence that genetic and environmental factors act in concert with epigenetic mechanisms in the development of chronic inflammation, altering the expression of genes and signalling pathways and leading to the transformation of normal intestinal stem cells into cancer stem cells. Since experimental manipulation of adult mammalian intestinal stem cells remains challenging we use Drosophila as a model system to study epigenetic regulation of intestinal stem cells under normal and pathogenic conditions. By performing a small scale in vivo RNAi screen we have identified epigenetic regulators of intestinal stem cells. Studying further the molecular mechanism by which these regulators control stem cell response to environmental challenges may provide novel insights and target strategies for the management of inflammatory diseases and cancer of the intestine. This proposal was funded with 20,000 euro for 1 year (2016).