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Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer CenterVanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center

 
Jennifer M. Giltnane

Jennifer M. Giltnane, M.D., Ph.D

Assistant Professor
Division of Investigative Pathology
Dept. of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
VICC Member
Pathologist

Profile

Dr. Giltnane is a junior faculty breast and molecular pathologist with a special interest in diagnostic quality improvement for the management and treatment of breast disease. She has research expertise in the development genomic and proteomic biomarkers for diagnosis, prediction, and prognosis in breast cancer as well as clinical expertise in the processing of tissue specimens and biobanking.
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Dr. Giltnane is a junior faculty breast and molecular pathologist with a special interest in diagnostic quality improvement for the management and treatment of breast disease. She has research expertise in the development genomic and proteomic biomarkers for diagnosis, prediction, and prognosis in breast cancer as well as clinical expertise in the processing of tissue specimens and biobanking. She is currently supported by the Department of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology to pursue post-doctoral training in the laboratory of Carlos Artega, M.D., focused on translational research technologies including next-generation sequencing toward the improvement of outcomes in breast cancer.

Education
  • MD, Yale University School of Medicine, 2008 
  • PhD, Yale University Graduate School of Arts, 2008 
  • Residency, Anatomic and Clinical Pathology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, 2012
Research Description

I am continuing my career at Vanderbilt with a focus on biomarker discovery and validation for the prediction of treatment resistance and recurrence in breast cancer. Currently, I am exploring the mechanisms of resistance to endocrine therapy utilizing tissue from a presurgical tissue trial of aromatase inhibitor treatment in operable ER+ breast cancers. Through multi-platform molecular profiling of these tumors, I hope to identify actionable somatic alterations and uncover additional therapeutic liabilities to overcome treatment resistance. A long-term goal is to develop a cost-effective, protein-based biomarker assay to predict endocrine-response in ER+ breast cancer, informed by my experience with quantitative protein measurements in tissue.

Second, in a collaborative project currently funded by a DOD Breast Cancer Research Program Breakthrough Award, I am determining the incidence and impact of JAK2 alterations in triple negative breast cancer. My research partner discovered JAK2 amplification in residual tumors after neoadjuvant chemotherapy. We have evidence that clonal populations in primary tumors containing this change are selected by treatment pressure, leading to a more aggressive tumor profile.

Finally, in an effort funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), I am working to establish an institution-wide pathological sample biorepository (PathLink), which will be linked to the local medical record databases, the Research (RD, identified) and Synthetic Derivatives (SD, deidentified). Our initial objective is to seed this research resource with ¿¿¿on the shelf¿¿¿ remnant DNA samples and tissues. Initial efforts will be focused on tumor samples highly annotated in the medical record, a subset of which has been profiled already in the molecular genetic pathology laboratory. These specimens are invaluable resource to my own research, and also to the research community, but only if they are quickly accessible to the investigators that need them. We are proposing a system that will allow banking of these specimens while also preserving tissue for future clinical assays if necessary.

Clinical Interest

Biobanking and tissue management for clinical studies, tissue microarray studies of clinical trial cohorts

Publications