Dr. Laundette Jones received her B.S. in Chemistry from Morgan State University in 1992 and then received her doctorate in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Division of Toxicological Sciences at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in May 2000.
After graduating from Hopkins, Dr. Jones spent a year as a postdoctoral fellow in the Laboratory of Experimental Carcinogenesis at the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health where she analyzed the molecular mechanisms of mammary gland genotoxicity and carcinogencity of food derived heterocyclic amines. She completed a second postdoctoral fellowship at the Georgetown University, Lombardi Cancer Center where she investigated the role of the Breast Cancer Susceptibility 1 (BRCA1) gene in breast cancer development.
Dr. Jones was selected as a NIH BIRCWH (Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health) Scholar by the Women's Health Research Group at the University of Maryland and joined the faculty as a member of the Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics in July 2005.
It is known that breast cancer originates in mammary epithelial cells (MEC) as a result of multiple genetic alterations, however these genetic alterations alone cannot explain the multistep nature of tumorigenesis and the diverse breast cancer subtypes observed in women. The projects in my lab are driven by the hypothesis that certain cell types in the microenvironment surrounding the mammary epithelium are key regulators in the conversion from a normal to a cancerous cell. We are utilizing preclinical mouse models of breast cancer and creating new in vitro culture models that effectively reproduce the breast tissue microenvironment to study how alterations in an individual's genes and/or exposure to environmental chemicals impact the ultimate fate of whether a MEC develops normally or turns cancerous. Experiments in our research program work together towards a common goal: To translate our mechanistic basic research to the clinic by identifying novel biomarkers for the early diagnosis of breast cancer that could yield new targets to block tumor progression.
Current research projects in my lab focus on these three questions:
Lab Techniques and Equipment: