Professor Villagra’s research in “immunoepigenetics”, the combination of epigenetics and immunotherapy, focuses on training the immune system to kill invading cancer cells and tumors. This method of treatment, which would reduce the dependency on radiation and chemotherapy, involves disrupting the pathways that allow tumors to “trick” the immune system and grow and travel throughout the body. He and his team hope this work will lead to new drugs and therapies that will ultimately strengthen the immune system and allow it to recognize and attack cancer cells more effectively.
“Science and Engineering Hall is the best place for us to collaborate with our partners from other GW schools. I am amazed about the ongoing research in chemistry, biomedical engineering, and other departments. After talking to other departments, I have no doubt that multiple interdisciplinary collaborations will be set in the short term. Having access to researchers from different fields will accelerate our discoveries and attract companies and donors to advance our work.”