Jórunn Erla Eyfjörð
Professor emeritus at Faculty of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, University of Iceland
Jórunn Erla Eyfjörd did her undergraduate studies at the University of Iceland and University of Minnesota and her doctoral studies on DNA repair at the MRC Cell Mutation Unit, University of Sussex, England in 1976. Her doctoral thesis was on DNA repair of radiation damage. After returning to Iceland she worked at the laboratory of Prof. Gudmundur Eggertsson at the University of Iceland Biology Institute and as a lecturer in molecular bioloy, cell biology and human genetics at the UI, Departments of Science and Medicine. In 1988 she was appointed by the Icelandic Cancer Society to set up and lead research in molecular cancer genetics in the then newly founded ICS Molecular and Cell Biology Research Laboratory. The laboratory was moved over to the University of Iceland, Faculty of Medicine in 2008 and is now the UI Cancer Research Laboratory. Jorunn Erla was appointed Associate Professor at the UI Faculty of Medicine 1998 and Professor 2005.
Research. Main research interests have been in the field of cancer genetics and genomic instability in cancer. Jorunn participated in the search for breast cancer susceptibility genes and found with her collaborators a local founder mutation, 999del5, in the BRCA2 gene in 1996. She also did large studies on prognostic significance of mutations in the p53 gene. In collaboration with the Icelandic Cancer Registry, the University Hospital Departments of Pathology and Oncology she has worked on a number of studies examining the population impact of mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes and their clinical importance in breast and prostate cancer.
Among present research projects:
- Molecular profiling of breast and prostate cancers using different microarray techniques looking at genetic variability and expression in tumours with and without BRCA defects with respect to prognosis and response to treatment
- Studies on DNA repair, genomic instability and cell division in cells with BRCA abnormalities
- Research on epigenetic changes in breast tumours (in collaboration with IDIBELL in Barcelona)
- Studies on telomeres in cancer
- Studies on new targeted cancer drugs in cell line models with and without BRCA abnormalities
Homepage (in Icelandic): Cancer Research Laboratory
Hólmfrídur Hilmarsdóttir, Biomedical scientist
Birna Þorvaldsdóttir, Doctoral student