About the Lebrun Lab

Based in Montréal, Canada, the Lebrun Lab is part of the Research Institute of McGill University Health center.

The vision/direction of our research program is to provide a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms driving tumor initiation and progression, stemness and resistance to chemotherapy, all of which considered as major challenges in the management of cancer patients. Our research will allow for the identification of key cancer master regulators, at the genome level and subsequent development of targeted treatments aimed at disabling/eliminating cancer cells, cancer stem cells as well as chemotherapy resistant tumors. It will also help define new diagnostic/prognostic markers and design novel anti-cancer therapies. Our research program is multidimensional involving molecular, prognostic and therapeutic research aspects. To achieve our objectives, we have developed central lines of research utilizing various cellular model systems (in vitro), preclinical studies using xenograft pre-clinical mouse models (in vivo), human cancer specimens as well as bioinformatics analyses of large cohorts of human tumors datasets. In time, our research will help develop diagnostic/biomarkers and therapeutic tools to improve metastatic cancer patients’ stratification and treatment and improve cancer patients’ survival.

About the Research Institute of McGill University Health center

The RI-MUHC Hospital offers a state of the art research institute equipped with powerful biomedical instruments. The MUHC is an internationally recognized biomedical and healthcare hospital research center, with over 500 researchers, 1,000 graduate and postdoctoral students. This is a unique medical and life sciences research facility in Canada, equipped with state-of-the-art technologies, cutting-edge core facilities (imaging, flow cytometry) and proteomic core unit for MS. The ultra-modern vivarium and associated staff is fully-ready for all surgical procedures and bio-imaging analysis.

About the Cancer Research Program (CRP)

The Cancer Research Program (CRP) benefits from new state-of-the-art facilities to conduct basic research at the Centre for Translational Biology, clinical cancer research at the Centre for Innovative Medicine, and evaluative cancer research at the Centre for Outcomes Research and Evaluation. Activities are supported by several newly enhanced technology platforms at the Glen site, including the Immunophenotyping, Histopathology, Biobank, Proteomics, Microscopy, Molecular Imaging, Small Animal Imaging Labs and Drug Discovery platforms.


Dasatinib, a Promising Anti-BCSC Agent in Combination with Paclitaxel to Overcome Chemotherapy Resistance in TNBCs.


We identified Dasatinib, a Src kinase family inhibitor, potently reduced BCSC self-renewal and two BCSC populations (ALDH+ and CD24lowCD44high) as well as phospho-Src. We also demonstrated Dasatinib to block pac-induced BCSC enrichment and Src activation in the parental TNBC cells. Interestingly, we found that Dasatinib induced an epithelial differentiation of pac-resistant cells, resulting in their enhanced sensitivity to Paclitaxel.

We thank all of our sponsors for their continued support.