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Tatiana Karakasheva, MS, Visiting Scientist

Siddharth Balachandran, PhD
Tatiana Karakasheva works in the laboratory of Dr. Greg Adams.

Since Tatiana Karakasheva was a high school student in Russia she knew she wanted to work in the cancer field, and her time at Fox Chase has only strengthened her curiosity.

Arriving at Fox Chase as a graduate student, Tatiana won a competition at Russian State Medical University where she was working towards a master's degree. The prize was a chance to come to Fox Chase Cancer Center in the United States and complete her thesis. She worked in the laboratory of Dr. Greg Adams as a graduate student, and was later offered a position as a visiting scientist.

"The friendliness and the amount of support in Dr. Adam's lab was something I never experienced in the past," says Karakasheva. "Also, the amount of trust put in myself and my peers from Dr. Adams makes us work that much harder. I am only in the beginning stages of my career, but he will be one of my greatest mentors, I am sure."

Currently Tatiana is working on two separate projects, developing antibodies for ovarian cancer therapy and a new project for renal cancer therapy.

"The new project is in collaboration with clinician Dr. Gary Hudes, creating liposomes targeted with antibodies carrying siRNA to produce a therapeutic benefit for patients," Tatiana explains. "The end result would of course be the development of drug therapy, targeting cancer cells without affecting the normal cells around it."

When asked what sets Fox Chase Cancer Center apart form its peers, she discusses Fox Chase's ability to merge basic science and translational research.

"I work very closely with clinical researchers here at Fox Chase. When I need a clinician's perspective, for example, Dr. Borghaei's laboratory is just next to mine and I can just go and ask," says Tatiana.

Future plans for Karakasheva involve pursuing her PhD and entering into the basic science field in cancer research in the future. "The more knowledge gained, obviously, the more questions one asks themselves. At the basic science level you see the signs of cancer genesis but you want to understand where they come from, that is what fascinates me most."