Ben Hogan lab

The Hogan lab, also known as the Vascular Biology lab, investigates the development of lymphatic vasculature and the blood brain barrier, which play important roles in the metastatic spread and treatment of cancer

Molecular control of lymphatic vessels

Lymphatic vessels play diverse roles in tissue function and disease. Tumour secreted growth factors promote the formation of lymphatics (lymphangiogenesis) and metastasize via new lymphatic vessels. Blocking lymphangiogenesis can reduce metastasis. On the flip-side, new approaches to promote lymphangiogenesis hold promise in lymphoedema, cardiovascular disease and in enhancing immunotherapy in cancer. We characterise new molecules and mechanisms that control lymphangiogenesis using zebrafish, mice and human endothelial models. The Ben Hogan lab uses large scale genetic screens, CRISPR genome editing, single cell genomics and in vivo cell biology.

Blood Brain Barrier development and function

The blood brain barrier (BBB) separates the brain from circulating blood and macromolecules. The BBB is made up of tightly adherent vascular endothelial cells surrounded by essential mural cell lineages that include pericytes, astrocytes, macrophages and neurons. Together this cellular collaborative known as the neurovascular unit (NVU) determines BBB function. The BBB is essential for brain development and function. The BBB also represents a significant challenge for delivery of therapeutics in brain cancer. The Ben Hogan lab aims to gain fundamental understanding of the regulation of the BBB, towards therapeutic gain. At the Ben Hogan lab, we use large scale genetic screens, live imaging and chemical (drug) screens.

Modelling and targeting vasculature in cancer

The Ben Hogan lab are using a number of new approaches to model tumour-endothelial cell interactions. Current studies include development of novel anti-lymphangiogenic molecules, large-scale phenotype based drug screening in zebrafish disease models, development of high-throughput brain cancer models and assessment of new methods to promote lymphangiogenesis.

Current projects

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