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Alejandro Corvalan got both MD and MSc from the University of Chile, Santiago, Chile and went on to train as a clinical and research fellow at the Mount Sinai Medical School New York, USA and then at Kagoshima University at Kagoshima, Japan. During this period he characterized the role of Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) in gastric cancer, a novel etiological agent that took almost 20 years to be recognized. He moved on to a position as an Assistant Professor at the University of Chile in Santiago, Chile and then to the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, TX, USA. In 2010, he moved back as an Associate Professor at the Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile, Santiago where he turned to the study of epigenetic modifications in pathogenesis and as biomarkers of diseases. His group identified a novel gene Reprimo that functions as a tumor suppressor in gastric cancer cells whose epigenetic modifications, such as methylation of the promoter region, may act as a cell-free DNA biomarker for non-invasive diagnosis of gastric cancer. More recently, his group switched to the study  of the role of non-coding genes (i.e. microRNAs) in precancer lesions of the stomach and showed that the microRNA-335 may act as a tumor suppressor gene and by inactivating metastatasis-promoting genes. Currently, his group is exploring how downregulation of the microRNA-335 in exosomes promotes metastasis. Alejandro Corvalan is currently director of Grupo Oncologico Chileno Cooperativo de Investigacion (GOCCHI) and Principal Investigator of the Advanced Center for Chronic Diseases (ACCDiS).