The Richard White Lab

The Richard White Lab

Zebrafish models of cancer evolution and metastasis

The zebrafish has emerged a premier model for studying cancer metastasis. We have developed a transparent strain of zebrafish, called casper, that allows for unprecedented imaging of how tumors interact with their surrounding microenvironment. The lab uses state of the art genetic engineering and imaging to dissect the mechanisms that allow tumors to successfully disseminate and take hold in new locations, which is the major cause of essentially all cancer deaths. Using a powerful genetic model of melanoma, we aim to uncover novel mechanisms that underlie cancer evolution and metastasis.

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The Richard White Lab

Richard White, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Research Focus

Cancer biologist and oncologist Richard White studies evolutionary mechanisms that promote tumor progression and metastasis, using the zebrafish as a model system.


  • Albany Medical College: M.D., Ph.D.
  • Yale New Haven Hospital: Internal Medicine Residency & Chief Residency
  • Dana Farber Cancer Institute & Massachusetts General Hospital: Medical Oncology Fellowship
  • Children’s Hospital Boston & Harvard Medical School: Postdoctoral Fellowship

Research Projects

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  • Kansler ER, Verma A, Langdon E, Simon-Vermot T, Yin A, Lee W, Attiyeh M, Elemento O, White RM. Cross-species oncogenomics identifies core mechanisms of melanoma evolution. In press, 2017
  • Kim IS, Heilmann S, Kansler ER, Zhang Y, Zimmer M, Ratnakumar K, Bowman RL, Simon-Vermot T, Fennell M, Garippa R, Lu L, Lee W, Hollmann, Xavier JB, White RM. Microenvironment-derived factors driving metastatic plasticity in melanoma. In press, 2017.
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Selected Achievements

  • NIH Directors New Innovator Award
  • Young Mentor Award, Melanoma Research Alliance
  • Young Investigator Award, American Association for Cancer Research/American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • Young Mentor Award, Harvard Medical School
  • Outstanding Educator Award, Yale School of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine