Prior to forming TGen in 2002, Dr. Trent served for 10 years as the Scientific Director of the National Human Genome Research Institute at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. Under his guidance, NHGRI's Division of Intramural Research became an internationally recognized research center in human genetics.
Dr. Trent's research has provided important insights into the genetic basis of cancer. He specializes in developing and integrating novel "omic" technologies, supporting studies of molecular changes related to cancer risk and progression. He is the author of more than 300 manuscripts in the scientific literature, numerous book chapters, invited reviews, and has given hundreds of invited lectures. He has received numerous honors and awards, and has sat on the editorial boards of a dozen scientific publications.
Work in Dr. Trent's laboratory focuses on the study of genetic changes related to cancer predisposition and progression. He has worked the majority of his career on melanoma, most recently serving as the Co-Principal Investigator of the Stand Up to Cancer Melanoma Dream Team. The focus on that project is using molecularly-guided therapy for patients with BRAF wild-type (BRAFwt) metastatic melanoma. He also was one of the leaders of an international consortium, which identified that Small Cell Carcinoma of the Ovary, hypercalcemic type, (SCCOHT) displays frequent inactivating germline and somatic mutations in SMARCA4. SCCOHT is an extremely rare, aggressive cancer affecting children and young women.
Dr. Trent's previous faculty positions included: The University of Arizona, where he was Deputy Director and Director for Basic Science of the Arizona Comprehensive Cancer Center; the University of Michigan, where he held the E. Maisel Endowed Professorship in Cancer Genetics, Professor of Human Genetics and Radiation Oncology, Head of the Cancer Biology Division of the Department of Radiation Oncology, and Deputy Director and Director of Basic Research for the Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center. He also is a Diplomat of the American College of Medical Genetics.