Dr. Redell is committed to understanding and targeting mechanisms of chemotherapy resistance and relapse in pediatric acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Research projects in her lab are focused on understanding the intrinsic mechanisms and extrinsic factors that lead to treatment failure. Her lab is also very interested in preclinical evaluation of novel therapeutics targeting chemoresistance pathways. As with solid tumors, individual cases of AML consist of a variety of subtypes of leukemia cells with different behaviors. This intratumor heterogeneity is a major challenge to elucidating the specific mechanisms that allow a few cells to survive therapy and generate relapse. Dr. Redell is using advanced single cell technologies to discriminate the chemoresistant cells from the bulk tumor population. The ultimate goal is to understand their specific biology and develop strategies for targeting these critical leukemic subpopulations.
Dr. Redell strongly believes that preclinical studies of AML must account for the influences of the microenvironment. Her lab routinely incorporates bone marrow stromal cells in cell culture experiments. Additionally, they have extensive expertise with a variety of mouse xenograft models in which human leukemia cells are propagated in specialized mouse hosts. Dr. Redell’s group has a productive patient-derived xenograft (PDX) program led by Dr. Alexandra Stevens, with one of the largest collections of pediatric AML PDX models in the country. Dr. Redell also serves as the Leukemia Program Lead for Baylor College of Medicine’s CPRIT-funded Patient-Derived Xenograft and Advanced In Vivo Models (PDX-AIM) Core.
Dr. Redell’s research program relies heavily on the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) for well-annotated, patient-derived AML specimens to conduct clinically relevant translational investigations. She is a strong advocate for patients and families who agree to make cancer tissue available for research efforts like hers. Through her role as the Vice Chair of Biology for the COG Myeloid Diseases Committee, she strives to ensure that leukemia specimens from pediatric AML patients are procured, banked, and utilized with the utmost care and respect for their incredible value. In sum, Dr. Redell is a physician-scientist committed to cutting-edge translational research that is impacting the lives of pediatric AML patients and their families.