Chibo Hong Costello Lab

Chibo Hong, PhD

Specialist / Lab Manager

Research interests: Genetic and epigenetic profiling of gliomas; intratumoral heterogeneity and treatment-associated malignant progression of gliomas
Other interests: Loves nature and sports; enjoys reading with her kids

We use novel quantitative imaging methods to guide biopsies to biologically distinct regions of brain tumors for targeted exome and transcriptome analysis.  Our goal is to identify naturally evolving and treatment-induced mutations that drive malignant transformation (MT) of low grade glioma (LGG) to high grade glioma (HGG). We incorporate MRI-guided tumor biopsies and treatment data with longitudinal genomics to allow the reconstruction of tumor evolution in the context of the human tumor in vivo. We use cutting-edge technology, the Next Generation Sequencing (NGS), to discover patterns and interdependencies of genetic mutations, epigenetic alternations and gene expression. Our goal is to understand the full evolutionary history of human brain tumors, from the first mutation and epimutation through clonal selection and tumor recurrence.
Our exome and RNA-seq data suggests that evolution of mutations differs dramatically in temozolomide (TMZ) treated and non-treated patients, and this commonly used chemotherapeutic agent itself may induce transformation-promoting driver mutations that converge on common signaling pathways. We will interrogate the genetic underpinnings of MT in TMZ-treated and untreated patients with two complementary approaches. Through collaboration, we will be exploring the application of immune therapies to target tumor specific mutations and tumors that emerge as hypermutated following chemotherapy.




Education & Training

1990: MD, Zhejiang University
2001: PhD, University of California, Berkeley
2001-2004: Postdoctoral Fellow, Costello Lab, UCSF

Selected Awards

2004: The American Brain Tumor Association Research Fellowship
2004: American Association for Cancer Research-AFLAC Awards
2007: Gordon Research Conferences: Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics Travel Award