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Craig J Ceol PhD

TitleAssistant Professor
InstitutionUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
DepartmentProgram in Molecular Medicine
AddressUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
368 Plantation Street, Sherman Center, AS6.1041
Worcester MA 01605
Phone508-856-5509
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    Other Positions
    InstitutionUMMS - School of Medicine
    DepartmentMolecular, Cell and Cancer Biology

    InstitutionUMMS - School of Medicine
    DepartmentProgram in Molecular Medicine

    InstitutionUMMS - Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
    DepartmentCancer Biology

    InstitutionUMMS - Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
    DepartmentInterdisciplinary Graduate Program

    InstitutionUMMS - Programs, Centers and Institutes
    DepartmentBioinformatics and Integrative Biology


    Collapse Biography 
    Collapse education and training
    Yale University, New Haven, CT, United StatesBSMolecular Biophysics & Biochem
    Yale University, New Haven, CT, United StatesMSMolecular Biophysics & Biochem
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United StatesPHDBiology

    Collapse Overview 
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    Craig Ceol's Lab Page


    Academic Background

     

    Craig Ceol received his B.S./M.S. degree from Yale University and subsequently worked as an Associate Scientist at Eli Lilly and Company.  He received his Ph.D. from M.I.T. in 2002 and was a postdoctoral fellow at M.I.T. until 2004.  From 2004 to 2008, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Children’s Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School where he was supported by fellowships from the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation and Charles A. King Trust.  In 2009 he continued his postdoctoral studies as an Instructor in Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School with support from an NIH Pathway to Independence Award.  In 2010, Dr. Ceol joined the Program in Molecular Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

    Genetic regulators of melanoma formation using the zebrafish

    Craig Ceol

    Cancer is a genetic disease that results from mutations in genes that control cell growth, division and survival.  Our laboratory seeks to identify the genetic defects that underlie tumor initiation and maintenance and understand the aberrant cellular processes that result from cancer-promoting mutations.  We have focused on malignant melanoma, the most aggressive and deadly skin cancer.  Melanoma arises from melanocytes, which produce the melanin pigments that impart color to skin and are important in the tanning response.  Mutations in the Ras/ERK signaling pathway are involved in converting normal melanocytes into melanomas.  In particular, mutations that overactive the BRAF serine/threonine kinase, a downstream effector of Ras signaling, are found in 60-70% of all melanomas.  These mutations are also present in benign melanocytic nevi - more commonly referred to as moles - indicating that other genetic alterations cooperate with oncogenic BRAF to generate melanomas.  We aim to identify these alterations and study how they cooperate with oncogenic BRAF to promote melanoma.

    Zebrafish Model

     

    We primarily utilize a zebrafish model of melanoma. Zebrafish melanocytes are externally visible, and single cells can be visualized in a living animal.  Together with a p53 mutation, human oncogenic BRAF can induce melanoma formation in zebrafish.  We developed a high-throughput method to express candidate oncogenes in zebrafish melanocytes (see figure below) and have tested whether genes that are recurrently amplified and overexpressed in human melanomas can accelerate tumor formation.  In these studies, we identified the SETDB1 histone methyltransferase as a new melanoma oncogene, highlighting the role of chromatin methylation and dysregulated transcription in tumorigenesis.  We are currently assessing additional candidates, including copy number altered genes and melanocyte lineage factors, for roles in melanoma.  In addition, we are probing how different cell subpopulations within a tumor are involved in its maintenance.  Ultimately our goal is to identify genes and cells that may serve as diagnostic and prognostic markers of disease as well as therapeutic targets. 

     



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    A postdoc position is available to study in Dr. Ceol's lab.Click here to apply.




    Collapse Bibliographic 
    Collapse selected publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
    List All   |   Timeline
    1. Venkatesan AM, Vyas R, Gramann AK, Dresser K, Gujja S, Bhatnagar S, Chhangawala S, Gomes CBF, Xi HS, Lian CG, Houvras Y, Edwards YJK, Deng A, Green M, Ceol CJ. Ligand-activated BMP signaling inhibits cell differentiation and death to promote melanoma. J Clin Invest. 2017 Dec 04. PMID: 29202482.
      View in: PubMed
    2. Kasheta M, Painter CA, Moore FE, Lobbardi R, Bryll A, Freiman E, Stachura D, Rogers AB, Houvras Y, Langenau DM, Ceol CJ. Identification and characterization of T reg-like cells in zebrafish. J Exp Med. 2017 Dec 04; 214(12):3519-3530. PMID: 29066577.
      View in: PubMed
    3. Darp R, Ceol C. Chromatin modification: A novel insight into BRAF-independent spontaneous melanoma. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. 2018 Jan; 31(1):9-10. PMID: 28971591.
      View in: PubMed
    4. Neiswender JV, Kortum RL, Bourque C, Kasheta M, Zon LI, Morrison DK, Ceol CJ. KIT Suppresses BRAFV600E-Mutant Melanoma by Attenuating Oncogenic RAS/MAPK Signaling. Cancer Res. 2017 11 01; 77(21):5820-5830. PMID: 28947418.
      View in: PubMed
    5. Tang Q, Iyer S, Lobbardi R, Moore JC, Chen H, Lareau C, Hebert C, Shaw ML, Neftel C, Suva ML, Ceol CJ, Bernards A, Aryee M, Pinello L, Drummond IA, Langenau DM. Dissecting hematopoietic and renal cell heterogeneity in adult zebrafish at single-cell resolution using RNA sequencing. J Exp Med. 2017 Oct 02; 214(10):2875-2887. PMID: 28878000.
      View in: PubMed
    6. Neto A, Ceol CJ. Melanoma-associated GRM3 variants dysregulate melanosome trafficking and cAMP signaling. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. 2017 Jun 24. PMID: 28646617.
      View in: PubMed
    7. Moore FE, Garcia EG, Lobbardi R, Jain E, Tang Q, Moore JC, Cortes M, Molodtsov A, Kasheta M, Luo CC, Garcia AJ, Mylvaganam R, Yoder JA, Blackburn JS, Sadreyev RI, Ceol CJ, North TE, Langenau DM. Single-cell transcriptional analysis of normal, aberrant, and malignant hematopoiesis in zebrafish. J Exp Med. 2016 May 30; 213(6):979-92. PMID: 27139488.
      View in: PubMed
    8. Wojciechowska S, van Rooijen E, Ceol C, Patton EE, White RM. Generation and analysis of zebrafish melanoma models. Methods Cell Biol. 2016; 134:531-49. PMID: 27312504.
      View in: PubMed
    9. Wojciechowska S, Zeng Z, Lister JA, Ceol CJ, Patton EE. Melanoma Regression and Recurrence in Zebrafish. Methods Mol Biol. 2016; 1451:143-53. PMID: 27464806.
      View in: PubMed
    10. Ceol CJ, Houvras Y. Uncharted Waters: Zebrafish Cancer Models Navigate a Course for Oncogene Discovery. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2016; 916:3-19. PMID: 27165347.
      View in: PubMed
    11. Iyengar S, Kasheta M, Ceol CJ. Poised Regeneration of Zebrafish Melanocytes Involves Direct Differentiation and Concurrent Replenishment of Tissue-Resident Progenitor Cells. Dev Cell. 2015 Jun 22; 33(6):631-43. PMID: 26073020.
      View in: PubMed
    12. Painter CA, Ceol CJ. Zebrafish as a platform to study tumor progression. Methods Mol Biol. 2014; 1176:143-55. PMID: 25030925.
      View in: PubMed
    13. Iyengar S, Houvras Y, Ceol CJ. Screening for melanoma modifiers using a zebrafish autochthonous tumor model. J Vis Exp. 2012 Nov 13; (69):e50086. PMID: 23183931.
      View in: PubMed
    14. Lian CG, Xu Y, Ceol C, Wu F, Larson A, Dresser K, Xu W, Tan L, Hu Y, Zhan Q, Lee CW, Hu D, Lian BQ, Kleffel S, Yang Y, Neiswender J, Khorasani AJ, Fang R, Lezcano C, Duncan LM, Scolyer RA, Thompson JF, Kakavand H, Houvras Y, Zon LI, Mihm MC, Kaiser UB, Schatton T, Woda BA, Murphy GF, Shi YG. Loss of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine is an epigenetic hallmark of melanoma. Cell. 2012 Sep 14; 150(6):1135-46. PMID: 22980977.
      View in: PubMed
    15. Richardson J, Zeng Z, Ceol C, Mione M, Jackson IJ, Patton EE. A zebrafish model for nevus regeneration. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. 2011 Apr; 24(2):378-81. PMID: 21324102.
      View in: PubMed
    16. Ceol CJ, Houvras Y, Jane-Valbuena J, Bilodeau S, Orlando DA, Battisti V, Fritsch L, Lin WM, Hollmann TJ, Ferré F, Bourque C, Burke CJ, Turner L, Uong A, Johnson LA, Beroukhim R, Mermel CH, Loda M, Ait-Si-Ali S, Garraway LA, Young RA, Zon LI. The histone methyltransferase SETDB1 is recurrently amplified in melanoma and accelerates its onset. Nature. 2011 Mar 24; 471(7339):513-7. PMID: 21430779.
      View in: PubMed
    17. North TE, Goessling W, Peeters M, Li P, Ceol C, Lord AM, Weber GJ, Harris J, Cutting CC, Huang P, Dzierzak E, Zon LI. Hematopoietic stem cell development is dependent on blood flow. Cell. 2009 May 15; 137(4):736-48. PMID: 19450519.
      View in: PubMed
    18. Freeman JL, Ceol C, Feng H, Langenau DM, Belair C, Stern HM, Song A, Paw BH, Look AT, Zhou Y, Zon LI, Lee C. Construction and application of a zebrafish array comparative genomic hybridization platform. Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2009 Feb; 48(2):155-70. PMID: 18973135.
      View in: PubMed
    19. Ceol CJ, Houvras Y, White RM, Zon LI. Melanoma biology and the promise of zebrafish. Zebrafish. 2008 Dec; 5(4):247-55. PMID: 19133823.
      View in: PubMed
    20. Goessling W, North TE, Lord AM, Ceol C, Lee S, Weidinger G, Bourque C, Strijbosch R, Haramis AP, Puder M, Clevers H, Moon RT, Zon LI. APC mutant zebrafish uncover a changing temporal requirement for wnt signaling in liver development. Dev Biol. 2008 Aug 1; 320(1):161-74. PMID: 18585699.
      View in: PubMed
    21. Langenau DM, Keefe MD, Storer NY, Jette CA, Smith AC, Ceol CJ, Bourque C, Look AT, Zon LI. Co-injection strategies to modify radiation sensitivity and tumor initiation in transgenic Zebrafish. Oncogene. 2008 Jul 10; 27(30):4242-8. PMID: 18345029.
      View in: PubMed
    22. White RM, Sessa A, Burke C, Bowman T, LeBlanc J, Ceol C, Bourque C, Dovey M, Goessling W, Burns CE, Zon LI. Transparent adult zebrafish as a tool for in vivo transplantation analysis. Cell Stem Cell. 2008 Feb 7; 2(2):183-9. PMID: 18371439.
      View in: PubMed
    23. Ceol CJ, Pellman D, Zon LI. APC and colon cancer: two hits for one. Nat Med. 2007 Nov; 13(11):1286-7. PMID: 17987022.
      View in: PubMed
    24. Harrison MM, Ceol CJ, Lu X, Horvitz HR. Some C. elegans class B synthetic multivulva proteins encode a conserved LIN-35 Rb-containing complex distinct from a NuRD-like complex. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006 Nov 7; 103(45):16782-7. PMID: 17075059.
      View in: PubMed
    25. Ceol CJ, Stegmeier F, Harrison MM, Horvitz HR. Identification and classification of genes that act antagonistically to let-60 Ras signaling in Caenorhabditis elegans vulval development. Genetics. 2006 Jun; 173(2):709-26. PMID: 16624904.
      View in: PubMed
    26. Ceol CJ, Horvitz HR. A new class of C. elegans synMuv genes implicates a Tip60/NuA4-like HAT complex as a negative regulator of Ras signaling. Dev Cell. 2004 Apr; 6(4):563-76. PMID: 15068795.
      View in: PubMed
    27. Thomas JH, Ceol CJ, Schwartz HT, Horvitz HR. New genes that interact with lin-35 Rb to negatively regulate the let-60 ras pathway in Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetics. 2003 May; 164(1):135-51. PMID: 12750327.
      View in: PubMed
    28. Ceol CJ, Horvitz HR. dpl-1 DP and efl-1 E2F act with lin-35 Rb to antagonize Ras signaling in C. elegans vulval development. Mol Cell. 2001 Mar; 7(3):461-73. PMID: 11463372.
      View in: PubMed
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