Senescent cells accumulate in premalignant lesions, sites of tissue damage and in normal tissues during aging. We study how senescent cells affect cancer, aging and age-related diseases.

Cellular senescence, a permanent cell-cycle arrest, prevents both tumorigenesis and tissue damage.  However, the long-term presence of senescent cells can paradoxically promote tissue damage and aging. These non-cell-autonomous effects are partially mediated by the secretion of soluble factors from senescent cells to their microenvironment. These soluble factors impact tissue homeostasis and can either interfere or support the normal function of tissues. In order to understand the role of cellular senescence in tissue damage, cancer, aging and more recently in embryonic development, our research aims to uncover the underlying mechanisms associated with the interaction of senescent cells with their microenvironment.