Shankar Sharmila, Ph.D. Shankar Sharmila, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Department of Genetics and Stanley S. Scott Cancer Center, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA, and Senior Scientist at the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System, New Orleans, LA. She completed her Ph.D. degree from the University of Mumbai in 1999.  She completed postdoctoral fellowship at University of Maryland and was an IRTA fellow at National Institute of Health with a cancer and immunology focus.  Her research interests focuses on the mechanisms of cancer progression and metastasis, with a special emphasis on phenotypic signaling, epigenetics, chemoprevention and targeted therapeutics.  In addition, she has performed research in transgenic and knockout models of cancer related genes of various origins. Amid the most recent, our insight about molecular and cellular pathways involved in pancreatic cancer and role of cancer stem cells in its progression has increased enormously. Dr. Shankar is funded through the VA Merit Award. Current projects in the lab include examining the tumor micro-environment, immune response to chronic inflammation, cancer etiology, cancer chemoprevention, mechanism of drug resistance, and generation of novel mouse models for pancreatic cancer.