Heaphy Lab

loading slideshow...

  • Photoreceptors

    Telomere-specific FISH with colabeling for cone nuclei and processes (green) and rod nuclei (magenta)

  • Prostate Cancer TMA

    Telomere-specific FISH with costaining for a basal-specific cytokeratin (magenta) as well as NKX3.1 and FOXA1 (green)

  • Senescent fibroblasts

    Senescent fibroblasts accumulate with age and can be accompanied by senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP).

  • Lamin A/C in PrCa

    Costaining for a lamin A/C (green) and cytokeratin 8 in a prostate cancer

  • Telo-CISH

    Telo-CISH multiplex with basal-specific cytokeratin facilitates easy identification of short telomeres

  • Breast TDLU

    Telomere and centromere-specific FISH with costaining for smooth muscle actin (magenta) and Ki67 (turquoise)

  • ALT+ PanNET

    Telomere-specific (red) and centromere-specific (green) FISH denotes the presence of ALT

  • ALT mechanism

    Break-induced replication mediates the extension of ALT telomeres

  • Proposed PanNET model

    Multistep tumorigenesis of sporadic non-functional PanNETs


Using a combination of tissue-based, cell-based, and molecular approaches, we conduct basic and translational research studies focused on elucidating the role of telomere alterations in the initiation and progression of human diseases, particularly cancer (e.g. prostate cancer, pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors, breast cancer, sarcomas, gliomas).

Our long-term goal is focused on how detection of molecular alterations in the tumor or tumor microenvironment may be readily translated into the clinic to accurately predict cancer risk, prognosis, and potential response to targeted therapies. 

We aim to foster a collaborative lab environment that leads to excellent professional training and scientific productivity. We are deeply committed to promoting diversity and inclusion in academia and medicine, and value personal and professional development for all.