- Research in the Espinosa lab falls under two labels: 1) Mechanisms of Gene Expression Control, and 2) Cancer Biology. The first label sounds like pure basic science, dealing with the fundamental processes by which gene activity is regulated to satisfy the ever-changing needs of the cell. The second label sounds very applicable to human health. In reality, both aspects of this research program blend into a pluripotent scientific endeavor. The overall idea is that human cancer is a disease of aberrant gene expression, where tumor cells display too little activity of some genes and too much of others. Such aberrant gene expression allows cancer cells to break free from the social rules imposed on individual cells within a multicellular organism and endows them with malignant properties. We reason that understanding how gene expression is imbalanced in cancer cells will enable the design of prophylactic, diagnostic and therapeutic tools.