A physician-scientist and Chair of Pathology at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., Dr. Antonia Sepulveda is an expert in gastrointestinal pathology and molecular diagnostic pathology of cancer.
“Practicing both diagnostic and molecular genomic pathology is synergistic and intellectually stimulating to me,” said Dr. Sepulveda. “I feel I can best contribute to patient care as a member of a multidisciplinary team.”
Dr. Sepulveda’s clinical practice provides specialized gastrointestinal, biliary and pancreas pathology diagnostic services with integrated molecular testing using genomics, epigenomics and specific tumor biomarkers for personalized cancer management and precision medicine of digestive organ cancers and pre-cancer conditions. These include esophageal cancer and Barrett’s esophagus; gastric, colorectal, pancreas, and biliary cancers; and pre-cancer risk lesions.
“When a surgical resection is not feasible, cancers in these organs have a poor prognosis,” said Dr. Sepulveda. “Ideally, we should use biomarkers in pre-cancer stages to tell us which patients will develop advanced lesions. That way, we can closely follow these at-risk patients and eradicate the lesions before advanced cancer develops.”
Dr. Sepulveda’s research is focused on an innovative integromics cancer research program that is exploring computationally generated networks that integrate the molecular mechanisms and biomarkers of gastric, esophageal and pancreatic cancers and precancerous lesions.
Dr. Sepulveda hopes to define novel tumor types and regulatory pathways of cancer development and progression, as well as biomarkers for their diagnosis and therapy. But biomarker discovery is challenging: detecting alterations in small numbers of cells is like finding a needle in a haystack. So she relies on high-sensitivity and high-resolution solutions like the Applied Biosystems OncoScan CNV Assays and FFPE Services, and the Applied Biosystems GeneChip Human Transcriptome Array 2.0 for discovery and characterization of mutations and somatic copy number alterations.