Fey Group

Cancer Dynamics and Modelling

Group Members

Dirk Fey
Assistant Professor
Annabelle Nwaokorie
Ph.D. Student, Fey Group

About the Group

What we do 

The aim of the Fey group is to understand the time-dependent signalling networks that control cell behaviour, and the dynamic processes that shape them. We are particularly interested in how these networks integrate information from the genes and the environment, how they respond to perturbations such as drugs, and how this dynamic computation goes wrong in disease, in particularly cancer. 
In a recent proof-of-concept study, we have shown that mathematical models of these networks dynamics can be used as prognostic tools to forecast the survival of cancer patients. In contrast to classic biomarkers that only provide snapshot measurements, these models can simulate drug treatments and predict how a patient's disease-state evolves over time. In our group, we believe that we can construct these patient-specific models though collaboration, in particular between mathematicians, biologists and clinicians. Thus, our approach is to combine mathematical modelling, laboratory experiments, and clinical work.   

We are always looking for talented people to join our team - contact  Dirk. 


Recent publications: 

For a complete list see Google Scholar 

Personalised Medicine for Colorectal Cancer Using Mechanism-Based Machine Learning Models. 
A Nwaokorie, D Fey.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2021; 22(18):9970. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22189970

Signaling pathway models as biomarkers: Patient-specific simulations of JNK activity predict the survival of neuroblastoma patients.  
D Fey, M Halasz, …, DR Croucher.  
Science Signalling 8 (408). PMID: 26696630 

On the personalised modelling of cancer signalling.  
D Fey, A Kuehn, BN Kholodenko.  
IFAC-PapersOnLine 49 (26), 312-317.  

The complexities and versatility of the RAS-to-ERK signalling system in normal and cancer cells.  
D Fey, D Matallanas, J Rauch, OS Rukhlenko, BN Kholodenko.  
Seminars in cell & developmental biology 58, 96-107. 2016. PMID: 27350026 

Frequency modulation of ERK activation dynamics rewires cell fate.  
H Ryu, M Chung, M Dobrzyński, D Fey, ...,  O Pertz.  
Molecular systems biology 11 (11), 838. 2015. PMID: 26613961 

Crosstalk and signaling switches in mitogen-activated protein kinase cascades.  
D Fey, DR Croucher, W Kolch, BN Kholodenko.  
Frontiers in physiology 3, 355-355. 2012. PMID: 23060802 


Research highlights 

SBI Blog:  Personalised modelling predicts neuroblastoma survival | January 2016 

SBI Blog:  Timing matters: Pulses of EGF hormone trick cells into becoming neurons | December 2015 


SBI Blog: Staying motivated during a pandemic as a PhD student | February 2021

SBI Blog:  Why march for science? | April 2017 

SBI Blog:  US Cancer Moonshot Initiative: A cancer scientist's perspective | video, January 2016 

SBI Blog:  From Systems Biology to Systems Medicine; a conversation with Pathologist Prof. David Harrison | video, March 2015 

SystemsMedicine.net: 10 questions to Dr Dirk Fey | August 2015

 SystemsMedicine.net: 10 Questions Science: Personalised modelling predicts neuroblastoma survival | January 2016



genomeweb:  Researchers model JNK signaling to predict survival in neuroblastoma | December 2015 

Irish Medical Times:  The digital future of healthcare in Ireland | March 2015 


 See Also: