Trainee Spotlight: Antonios Chronopoulos, PhD
Growing up in the picturesque coastal suburb of Glyfada in Athens, Greece, Antonios was drawn to math, physics and sports. In college he competed in track and field (100-meter sprints), which triggered a deep fascination with human physiology and the inner workings of molecular biology.
That passion turned into a PhD in bioengineering from Imperial College London, as well as a postdoctoral fellowship in cancer biology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. In 2020, he joined CHLA to study neuroblastoma, a childhood cancer that develops from immature nerve cells.
As a Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of JinSeok Park, PhD, Antonios is investigating how the physical interactions between cancer cells and the extracellular matrix in the tumor microenvironment are co-opted to drive tumor progression.
“I am hoping to shed light on how the extracellular matrix may rewire the epigenetic and transcriptional landscape of neuroblastoma and potentially other pediatric tumors,” he explains. “The ultimate goal is to identify new targets for therapeutic interventions.”
A self-described “fitness fanatic,” Antonios once dabbled in Olympic weightlifting and feels right at home in Los Angeles. “I love the eternal spring-like climate, the beautiful beaches, the hidden hiking trails and the oceanfront brunch spots,” he shares. His favorite activity this past winter? Skiing adventures in Big Bear.