MIT on the Road
Understanding the Link between Diet, Stem Cells and Cancer
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The intestine is a rapidly proliferating organ that on average replaces its entire lining every five days, which in an average adult human equates to approximately 300 grams of new intestinal tissue being generated daily. Intestinal stem cells power this regeneration.
Professor Yilmaz’ lab is working on elucidating the molecular mechanisms underpinning the connection between stem cells, nutrients, and cancer in conditions of low-calorie states as well as in diet-induced obesity. By better understanding how intestinal stem cells adapt to various nutrients, Dr. Yilmaz hopes to identify and develop new strategies that prevent and reduce the growth of cancers involving the intestinal tract that includes the small intestine, colon, and rectum.
Ömer Yilmaz, MD, PhD
- Assistant Professor of Biology at MIT
- Gastrointestinal pathologist at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School
- Member of the Whitehead Institute and the Koch Institute for Cancer Research
Professor Yilmaz is a graduate of the University of Michigan Medical School. He has been awarded a V Scholar Grant from the Jimmy V foundation and an American Federation for Aging Research Grant for Junior Faculty. In 2016, he was named a Sidney Kimmel Scholar, an honor granted to the nation's most promising young cancer researchers. Professor Yilmaz was also named a Pew-Stewart Scholar for Cancer Research.