About Olivia L. Francis-Boyle, PhD

I currently serve as an Assistant Professor in the Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine at Loma Linda University and as Principal Investigator for an independent research program that provides training for volunteers, students and post-doctoral fellows. I also teach topics in Immunology and Endocrinology. I regularly engage in many service activities that 1) contribute to the education and support of current and prospective students and 2) provide a bridge between science and the community.

Expertise: My areas of expertise include immunology; normal hematopoiesis; hematology oncology (acute leukemias); patient derived xenograft (PDX) models; and in vitro and in vivo models of drug therapy.

Research Interests: Current studies in my laboratory focus primarily on 1) understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms that contribute to the development of acute leukemias, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL); and 2) identifying and evaluating promising therapeutic candidates for the treatment of acute leukemias (ALL and AML) and other cancers.

Research Approaches: Current research approaches in my lab include the use of in vitro models of biologics, natural products, small molecules and immunotherapies; the use of in vivo models including patient-derived xenograft (PDX) mouse models; the use of drug combination models and the use of high throughput next generation sequencing. In addition to my own studies, I have ongoing projects with collaborators to evaluate therapeutic candidates for the treatment of AML and other cancers. 

Teaching Philosophy: I believe that all students are intelligent and can be successful academically if given the right tools. I work towards preparing master-adaptive learners in the classroom by utilizing an integrative approach that focuses on combining basic science foundational principles and clinical applications. This is accomplished by creating engaging learning activities, incorporating multiple intelligence principles (for instruction and assessment) and providing opportunities for critical thinking in the classroom.