Bio

Post-Doc Harvard Medical School, 2012-2017Ph.D. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2012M.S. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2009B.S. University of Tehran, 2007
Mohammad Fallachi-Sichani, PhD, Assistant Professor

"My research, at the interface of computational systems biology, quantitative pharmacology and cancer biology, aims at discovering fundamental mechanisms that regulate the behavior of human cells in response to perturbations. From a detailed understanding of these mechanisms, we can learn to improve the responses of healthy cells to harmful stimuli, and develop rational strategies to induce selective killing in cancer cells."

Mohammad Fallachi-Sichani, PhD, Assistant Professor

Research in the Fallahi-Sichani laboratory aims at designing, building and utilizing new experimental and computational tools, as means to discover fundamental mechanisms that regulate the behavior of human cells in response to perturbations, such as cytokines, environmental stress, and therapeutic drugs. The lab merges data acquisition using advanced technologies such as multiplexed proteomic and genomic measurements, high-throughput microscopy and single-cell analysis with data-driven and mechanistic computational modeling.

The long-term goal of the current projects is to define, at a single-cell level, molecular mechanisms that underlie adaptive cell fate decisions in the presence of cell-autonomous, microenvironment, and therapy-induced selective pressures, and elucidate how they vary under unhealthy conditions, particularly in cancer cells. From a therapeutic point of view, a detailed understanding of these mechanisms will provide a rational basis for choosing the optimal therapeutic targets to: (1) maximize the desired effect in diseased cells (e.g. tumor cell killing), (2) prevent the development of therapeutic resistance, and (3) reduce therapy-induced adverse effects in healthy cells.

More about Dr. Fallahi-Sichani:

Mohammad Fallahi-Sichani obtained his bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology from the University of Tehran in 2007. In 2012, he earned a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan, where he was awarded the Eleanor Towner Prize for Outstanding PhD Research under the joint supervision of Dr. Jennifer Linderman and Dr. Denise Kirschner. He then joined the laboratory of Dr. Peter Sorger at Harvard Medical School as a Life Sciences Research Foundation (LSRF) fellow, where he was also awarded a K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award from the NIH/NCI in 2015.

Dr. Fallahi-Sichani began his faculty career at the University of Michigan in 2017. He will join the University of Virginia in June 2020. Please continue to reach him at his University of Michigan email until his UVA email becomes active (in Spring 2020).

Prospective Graduate Students

Fallahi-Sichani laboratory is currently accepting graduate student applications through the Department of Biomedical Engineering Ph.D. Program at the University of Virginia. We welcome graduate students interested in Systems Biology, Computational Biology, Biomedical Data Sciences, Cancer Biology and Pharmacology. Enthusiastic students with background in Biology or Engineering are encouraged to contact Dr. Fallahi-Sichani at fallahi@umich.edu to discuss possible projects.

Prospective Postdocs

We also welcome highly motivated postdoctoral research candidates who are interested in working at the cutting edge of Quantitative Biology to the Fallahi-Sichani laboratory at the University of Virginia.

Awards

  • National Institutes of Health NIGMS Maximizing Investigators' Research Award (MIRA) 2019
  • Department of Defense Peer Reviewed Cancer Research Program Career Development Award 2018
  • V Foundation for Cancer Research V Scholar Award 2017

Research Interests

  • Computational Systems Biology
  • Systems Pharmacology
  • Cancer Biology
  • Signal Transduction
  • Epigenetic Regulation

In the News

Selected Publications

  • Phenotype-Based Probabilistic Analysis of Heterogeneous Responses to Cancer Drugs and Their Combination Efficacy bioRxiv 2019 | COMANDANTE-LOU N, KHALIQ M, VENKAT D, MANIKKAM M and FALLAHI-SICHANI M.
  • Epigenetic Mechanisms of Escape from BRAF Oncogene Dependency Cancers 11, 1480 2019 | KHALIQ M, FALLAHI-SICHANI M.
  • Adaptive Resistance of Melanoma Cells to RAF Inhibition via Reversible Induction of A Slowly Dividing De-Differentiated State Molecular Systems Biology 13, 905 2017 | FALLAHI-SICHANI M, BECKER V, IZAR B, BAKER GJ, LIN JR, BOSWELL SA, SAHAH P, ROTEM A, GARRAWAY LA, SORGER PK
  • Highly Multiplexed Imaging of Single Cells Using a High-Throughput Cyclic Immunofluorescence Method Nature Communications 6, 8390 2015 | LIN JR, FALLAHI-SICHANI M, SORGER PK.
  • Systematic Analysis of BRAF(V600E) Melanomas Reveals a Role for JNK/c-Jun Pathway in Adaptive Resistance to Drug-Induced Apoptosis Molecular Systems Biology 11, 797 2015 | FALLAHI-SICHANI M, MOERKE NJ, NIEPEL M, ZHANG T, GRAY NS, SORGER PK.
  • Metrics Other Than Potency Reveal Systematic Variation in Responses to Cancer Drugs Nature Chemical Biology 9, 708 2013 | FALLAHI-SICHANI M, HONARNEJAD S, HEISER LM, GRAY JW, SORGER PK.