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Emily B Harrison

Postdoctoral Trainee

Emily B Harrison


(919) 843-8227
32056 Lineberger Cancer Center, 450 West Dr., CB# 7295, Chapel Hill, NC, 27599, , 125 Mason Farm Road, , , Chapel Hill, NC, 27599

Emily Harrison, Ph.D., joined UNC in 2016 after receiving her B.S. from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and her Ph.D. in neuroscience at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Harrison studied the role of microRNAs in traumatic brain injury under the guidance of Howard Fox, Ph.D. Her current research focus, under the guidance of Chad Pecot, M.D., is uncovering novel miRNA regulators of cancer metastasis and exploring therapeutic strategies for microRNA delivery and inhibition.

Metastases account for nearly all cancer-related deaths, but current strategies for targeting metastatic processes are limited. In part, this is due to an incomplete understanding of the mechanisms driving metastasis. Harrison’s research will integrate bioinformatics and mouse models to uncover new microRNA regulators of metastasis and develop nanoparticle-based microRNA delivery strategies.

Dr. Harrison is a recipient of a Pilot Project award for C-CNTP Fellows sponsored by the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. The majority of cancer patients die from metastasis, however current therapies for cancer target growth of the primary tumor. Evidence from our group and others implicate microRNAs (miRs) as “master regulators” of metastasis. Each miR regulates hundreds of genes and multiple pathways making them key players in cancer biology. This study will identify new mechanisms by which miRs regulate metastasis and test nanoparticle delivery of anti-metastatic miRs as a therapeutic approach for lung cancer.