Philip Gregory

Philip Gregory

Adelaide Medical School

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Asoociate Professor Philip Gregory
Head, Gene Regulation in Cancer Laboratory
Centre for Cancer Biology: An Alliance between University of South Australia and SA Pathology.

A/Prof Philip Gregory is researching the new and exciting area of ‘microRNAs’. These are tiny particles of genetic material that exist inside cells and regulate how our genes are switched on and off. MicroRNAs were only discovered relatively recently and their role in the development of breast cancer is just beginning to be explored.

A/Prof Gregory is interested in how microRNAs influence breast and prostate cancer cells to spread to other parts of the body – a process known as metastasis. Metastatic (or secondary) breast cancer is currently very difficult to treat effectively, so understanding how metastasis occurs could lead to the development of more effective treatments and improved prevention strategies.

Epithelial cell plasticity (or epithelial-mesenchymal transition, EMT) plays a major role in the driving cancer cell invasion and their metastasis to other organs. My lab is examining how EMT and cancer metastasis are regulated by microRNAs. In particular, our research focusses on how microRNAs alter the cancer cell transcriptome using in vitro and in vivo cancer models coupled with next generation sequencing.

Gene Regulation in Cancer Laboratory

The Gene Regulation in Cancer Laboratory within the Centre for Cancer Biology  investigates the molecular mechanisms controlling tumour cell plasticity in breast and prostate cancer, with a specific focus on the role of microRNAs and alternative splicing in this process. A/Prof. Gregory's groundbreaking research identified the miR-200 family as central regulators of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (Nature Cell Biology, >3000 citations). His lab uses the latest advances in transcriptomics coupled with in vitro and in vivo cancer models to investigate how cancer cells progress towards a metastatic state.

Project 1

Title: Function of alternative splice variants in cancer cell plasticity

Description: Using CRISPR gene editing, this project will uncover the function of alternatively spliced variants that are strongly induced in invasive cancer cells but whose function has not yet been investigated.

Projects available for: Honours and HDR

Location: Centre for Cancer Biology

Research Project Start: Semester 1 and 2


Project 2

Title: How microRNAs regulate breast cancer metastasis

Description: This project will determine the target genes of miRNAs that function in breast cancer progression and metastasis using cell culture and animal models.

Projects available for: Honours and HDR

Location: Centre for Cancer Biology

Research Project Start: Semester 1 and 2

1. GREGORY PA (CIA) Discovery of optimal targets to better diagnose and treat metastatic cancer. Beat Cancer Principal Research Fellowship. Funding for 2019-2021.

2. GREGORY PA (CIA), Goodall GJ, Hollier BG Characterising an RNA splicing pathway driving prostate cancer metastasis and therapy resistance. NHMRC Project Grant APP1164669. Funding for 2019-2021.

3. GREGORY PA (CIA), Anderson RL, Goodall GJ miR-342 – a novel suppressor of a pro-metastatic gene network in triple-negative breast cancer. National Breast Cancer Foundation IIRS-18-147. Funding for 2018-2020.

4. GREGORY PA (CIA), Goodall GJ Characterising novel alternative splicing networks that promote tumour cell plasticity. NHMRC Project Grant APP1128479. Funding for 2017-2019.

  • Past Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2014 - 2016 Co-Supervisor The Role of microRNA-194 and microRNA-375 in Prostate Cancer Metastasis Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Dr Rajdeep Das
    2013 - 2014 Co-Supervisor Novel Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor Signalling Pathways Regulating Neuronal Differentiation Master of Philosophy (Medical Science) Master Full Time Dr Yang Kong
    2012 - 2017 Co-Supervisor A Role for Bivalent Genes in Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Part Time Mr Francisco Sadras
    2012 - 2024 Co-Supervisor Regulation of Breast Cancer Progression and Metastasis by MicroRNA-342-3p Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Part Time Ms Victoria Kiriaki Arnet
    2010 - 2012 Co-Supervisor The miR 200 Family is Controlled by Epigenetic based Mechanisms and Mediates Transition Between Non Stem and Stem like Cell Phenotypes Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Yat Yuen Lim
    2008 - 2013 Co-Supervisor Regulation of the microRNA-200 family during epithelial to mesenchymal transition Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Miss Natasha Kolesnikoff

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