Shambhavi Singh, a PhD graduate of the Janes lab, has won the Jill E. Hungerford Award for 2021. This award is given annually to a doctoral student who exemplifies a commitment, achievement, and passion for research aimed at broadening scientific knowledge.
Sham’s thesis involved applying engineering approaches to understand the variation in cancer cells within breast tumors, with a particular focus on those tumors that retain the expression of hormone receptors. Using a technique developed by the lab called “stochastic profiling”, Sham isolated and characterized small pools of cells from human breast cancer specimens and evaluated the gene expression profiles. She was the first to apply this technique to samples isolate from patients, and she uncovered sets of genes whose expression consistently appeared in early-stage breast cancers. The significance of this finding was summarized by her mentor, Dr. Janes, who stated: “We believe that these observations identify the earliest points at which luminal breast cancers begin to diverge from one another.”
Sham was also an active member of the BIMS community, serving on several student committees and volunteering in the BIMS Diversity Day. As part of her medical school training under the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP), she also served on the MSTP Admissions Committee and chaired the Junior Investigators Meeting of the NCI Cancer Systems Biology Consortium.
Currently, Sham is in her intern year as an Internal Medicine resident at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA.
Congratulations on winning this award, Sham!