Prof Rick Pearson
Professor Rick Pearson was appointed as the Head of the Cancer Signalling Laboratory at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in 1995 after 3 years as a Human Frontiers of Science Fellow at the Friedrich Miescher Institute in Basel Switzerland. He is also Head of the Oncogenic Signalling and Growth Control Program at Peter Mac, is an NHMRC Senior Research Fellow and Professorial Fellow in the Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology and the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Melbourne as well as Adjunct Professor (Research), Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Monash University.
A major focus of his research is to understand the molecular basis of the regulation of ribosome biogenesis, protein synthesis and cell growth and to use this knowledge to address how deregulation of these processes contributes to malignant transformation. His laboratory has recently demonstrated that increases in a cell’s ability to make ribosomes, is absolutely required for the increased cell growth that is critical for the development of cancers of the blood, ovary, prostate and skin. Importantly, they have shown that newly identified inhibitors of ribosome production can be used to treat these cancers in vivo opening the way to develop new options for single agent and combination therapies. One such inhibitor, CX-5461 is now in clinical trial at the Peter Mac. This work has now been published in highly ranked journals including Cancer Cell, Cancer Discovery, Journal of Clinical Investigation, Clinical Cancer Research and Oncogene