Julian J. Lum, PhD
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Biochemistry and Microbiology, and Biology, University of Victoria
Dr. Lum was born in Ottawa, Ontario graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry at the University of Ottawa in 1999. He stayed at the University of Ottawa and joined the laboratory of Andrew D. Badley, M.D. (Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota) to pursue his PhD in Microbiology and Immunology. During his graduate work, Dr. Lum studied the regulation of death receptor-mediated apoptosis of CD4 T cells. His work focused on TNF-Related Apoptosis Inducing Ligand (TRAIL) during HIV infection and its physiological role in neutrophil homeostasis. In 2003, Dr. Lum pursued post-doctoral training with Craig B. Thompson at the University of Pennsylvania where they studied how metabolic stress regulates autophagy and consequentially T cell function. Dr. Lum was recruited to the BC Cancer Agency in 2008 where he will continue his long-standing interest in pathways regulation cell death and survival.
My laboratory is interested in studying how cellular metabolism regulates autophagy in the immune system and how this affects the process of tumorigenesis. We plan to study autophagy and its role in controlling lymphocyte effector functions in nutrient limited tumour sites. These studies are driven by the hypothesis that autophagy can promote lymphocyte cell survival. In addition, we are undertaking studies to examine how autophagy may impact on tumour antigen cross-presentation. These investigations will be used to direct novel immunotherapy approaches to treat cancer. The major research projects in the laboratory include:
Studies of T cell immune responses: bioenergetic control of T cell function
The bioenergetics of autophagy in cancer
Targeting metabolic pathways by immunotherapy
Cancer stem cells and autophagy