Tu Nguyen-Dumont

Clinical Genomics Lab


2020 Clinical Genomics lab L-R Back row: Jared Burke, Tu Nguyen-Dumont, Jason Steen, Front row: Yoav Aufgang (former UROP student), Medha Suman, Derrick Theys.

Biography

Dr Tu Nguyen-Dumont is a molecular biologist, cancer genomicist and bioinformatician. She is a current National Breast Cancer Foundation Career Development Fellow. She is the head of the Clinical Genomics lab in the Precision Medicine research group, at Monash University and an Honorary Research Fellow, Department of Clinical Pathology, The University of Melbourne.

During her PhD, Dr Nguyen-Dumont trained at the World Health Organisation International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), Lyon, in the Genetic Cancer Susceptibility group, under the supervision of Prof Sean Tavtigian. She was the recipient of a PhD Scholarship from Fondation de France (2007-2008) and a Special Trainee Award from IARC (2009-2010). Dr Nguyen-Dumont obtained a PhD in molecular biology and genetics from Université Claude Bernard, Lyon, France, in December 2010. She was awarded a Komen Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellowship (2011-2014), which allowed her to gain international research experience and move to Australia in 2011. She was a Research Fellow at The University of Melbourne (2011-2017). In 2017, she was awarded a Career Development Fellowship from the National Breast Cancer Foundation (2017-2021), which allowed her to start her own team at Monash University.

Research Overview

Dr Nguyen-Dumont’s research spans germline, somatic and functional genomics studies in various cancer types, including breast, prostate and childhood cancers. The Clinical Genomics lab has a strong focus on genetic cancer susceptibility, translational bioinformatics and implementation of expanded genomic testing in clinical practice.

As part of her NBCF Fellowship, Dr Nguyen-Dumont is leading the genomic analyses of a research program called BRA-STRAP, the largest Australian study of breast cancer predisposition. BRA-STRAP leverages several Australian population-based research studies and clinic-based resources, representing over 30,000 women across the breast cancer risk spectrum, to identify and characterise genetic variants associated with increased risk of breast cancer. Dr Nguyen-Dumont’s recent work in BRA-STRAP has enabled the characterisation of the risk associated with breast cancer for pathogenic variants in breast cancer susceptibility genes and the generation of age-specific cumulative risk (penetrance) estimates that are specific to the Australian population. These estimates are used by clinicians to inform counselling.

Dr Nguyen-Dumont has led the Precision Medicine research effort that has contributed to the discovery of multiple new genetic risk factors that make men susceptible to aggressive prostate cancer, in a gene-panel sequencing study published in the International Journal of Cancer and a whole exome sequencing study published in European Urology. These studies are the product of decades of collaboration with the Cancer Epidemiology Division, Cancer Council Victoria.

Dr Nguyen-Dumont’s expertise in cancer genetics, bioinformatics and cutting-edge genomic technologies is evidenced by her role of Chair of the Bioinformatics Working group of the COMPLEXO consortium. She is a member of the Monash Partners Comprehensive Cancer Consortium (MPCCC) Precision Oncology Steering Committee. She is the convenor of the MPCCC “Tech Talks” and was the co-convenor of the Victorian Cancer Bioinformatics Symposium 2020.

She is an active member of several research consortia (ENIGMA, PALB2 Interest Group, PRACTICAL) and large translational research initiatives (BRA-STRAP, Australia; CARRIERS, US; BRIDGES, EU) that are trying to address key questions in the field of cancer predisposition.

More information on Dr Nguyen-Dumont’s institutional and community engagement roles can be found on her Research Profile.

Find out more about Dr Tu Nguyen-Dumont.