Inside My Lab: Joan Massagué

VIDEO | 02:08

Go inside the lab of Joan Massagué, Chief Scientific Officer and Director, Sloan Kettering Institute.

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Cancer, it's a problem that is affecting thousands, millions of people, perhaps, and that can be solved, or at least improved, through the research that you can do in the right environment, in the right lab, in the right institution.

My name is Joan Massagué. I am a member and director of the Sloan Kettering

Institute. "Instead of putting it into a wild type chromosome...."

Inside my lab, we study metastasis, the process by which tumors are spread. Cancer cells leave a tumor, infiltrate distant organs, and live there for years before they cause big trouble. If we can understand metastases and the root of it, we can better treat

cancer. "What you're seeing here is that these carcinoma glands are actually inside the basal membrane..."

My personal philosophy when it comes mentoring is to not teach them just to be a good investigator, who formulates questions and discovers things and writes them up in a paper. I want to inspire them to be great scientists, people who in society are contributing knowledge and presenting the truth.

I'm a firm believer that the best career is the one that is accompanied by the best life.

I don't believe in work until you drop because you're a scientist.

The lab comes together to have great fun. We've done cooking classes or painting. This brings people together and uncovers facets of people's personalities that don't come through when they are working behind a pipette.

I want us to have a great story to tell. That can be a story of discovery and success, or a discovery of failures and what we are going to do about it because most of science is about failing on your way to succeeding.