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Cancer Biology Commons

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Articles 1 - 15 of 15

Full-Text Articles in Cancer Biology

Identification And Utility Of Dna In Exosomes, Paul Kurywchak May 2018

Identification And Utility Of Dna In Exosomes, Paul Kurywchak

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Cancer-associated mortality has been declining for two decades but remains a significant public health problem, especially when patients initially present with advanced disease. Early detection methods have improved survival rates but remain unavailable for a majority of cancers due to a lack of sensitive biomarkers or numerous limitations associated with current diagnosis strategies. Approaches to develop “liquid biopsies” by detecting tumor cells or DNA in the blood have led to several breakthroughs and create the potential for non-invasive, routine assessment of diseases status. However, these biomarkers are rare and currently difficult to isolate, especially in the early stages of disease ...


Characterization Of Notch1 And Pi3k-Pten-Akt/Mtor Pathway Interaction In Head And Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Kyriante' Henry Dec 2017

Characterization Of Notch1 And Pi3k-Pten-Akt/Mtor Pathway Interaction In Head And Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Kyriante' Henry

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) affects various mucosal sites of the upper aerodigestive tract, including the nasal and oral cavities, the nasopharynx, and the oropharynx. More than five hundred thousand new cases of HNSCC occurred in 2011 alone, with 50,000 reported cases in the United States. This trend made HNSCC the seventh most common non-skin cancer worldwide (Ferlay et al., 2015). Although significant epidemiological and pathological advancements have been made, survival rates have not improved much over the last 40 years, leaving a mortality rate that remains at approximately 50%. An unbiased drug screen demonstrated that HNSCC ...


The Role Of The Epithelial-To-Mesenchymal Transition (Emt) In Lung Cancer Progression, David H. Peng Aug 2017

The Role Of The Epithelial-To-Mesenchymal Transition (Emt) In Lung Cancer Progression, David H. Peng

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths due to conventional therapy resistance and metastatic disease, therefore understanding the mechanisms governing these biological functions is vital for improving patient survival. Approximately 30% of patients with the adenocarcinoma histologic subset of lung cancer possess an activating KRAS mutation, characterized by a lack of response to chemotherapies with a poor overall 5-year survival rate. Despite the mutational frequency, KRAS remains a challenge to pharmacologically inhibit and current drugs undergoing clinical trials that target specific downstream effector proteins of KRAS, such as MEK inhibitors, have failed to produce significant clinical benefits. Previous ...


Preclinical Development Of Therapeutic Strategies Against Triple-Negative And Inflammatory Breast Cancer, Angie M. Torres-Adorno Aug 2017

Preclinical Development Of Therapeutic Strategies Against Triple-Negative And Inflammatory Breast Cancer, Angie M. Torres-Adorno

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Triple-negative (TNBC) and inflammatory (IBC) breast cancer are the most aggressive forms of breast cancer, accounting for 20% and 10% of cancer-related deaths, respectively. Among IBC cases, 30% are additionally classified with TNBC molecular pathology, a diagnosis that significantly worsens patient’s prognosis. The current lack of TNBC and IBC molecular understanding prevents the development of effective therapeutic strategies. To identify effective treatments, we explored aberrant apoptosis pathways and cell membrane fluidity as novel therapeutic targets.

We first identified an effective therapeutic strategy against TNBC and IBC by pro-apoptotic protein NOXA-mediated inhibition of the anti-apoptotic protein MCL1 following inhibition of ...


The Role Of The Diras Family Members In Regulating Ras Function, Cancer Growth And Autophagy, Margie Nicole Sutton May 2017

The Role Of The Diras Family Members In Regulating Ras Function, Cancer Growth And Autophagy, Margie Nicole Sutton

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

DIRAS3 is a maternally imprinted tumor suppressor gene that is downregulated by multiple mechanisms across several tumor types. When re-expressed, DIRAS3 decreases proliferation, inhibits motility, and induces autophagy and tumor dormancy. DIRAS3 encodes a 26 kDa small GTPase with 60% homology to Ras and Rap, differing from oncogenic Ras family members by a 34-amino acid N-terminal extension that is required for its tumor suppressive function in ovarian cancer. By assessing the structure-function relationship, I found that DIRAS3 inhibits Ras-induced transformation and is a natural antagonist of Ras/MAPK signaling. DIRAS3 binds directly to Ras and disrupts cluster formation inhibiting the ...


Regulation Of Breast Cancer Initiation And Progression By 14-3-3zeta, Chia-Chi Chang Aug 2016

Regulation Of Breast Cancer Initiation And Progression By 14-3-3zeta, Chia-Chi Chang

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

14-3-3ζ is a ubiquitously expressed family member of proteins that have been implicated to have oncogenic potential through its interactions and involvement in cancer initiation and progression. 14-3-3ζ belongs to the highly conserved 14-3-3ζ protein family and modulates numerous pathways in cancer. Overexpression of 14-3-3ζ is an early event, occurs in more than 40% of human breast cancer cases, and is associated with disease recurrence and poor prognosis. Metabolic reprogramming is a hallmark of cancer. Cancer cells elevate aerobic glycolysis to produce metabolic intermediates and reducing equivalents, thereby facilitating cellular adaptation to the adverse environment and sustaining fast proliferation. Interestingly ...


Normal Glycolytic Enzyme Activity Is Critical For Hypoxia Inducible Factor-1a Activity And Provides Novel Targets For Inhibiting Tumor Growth, Geoffrey Grandjean Phd Dec 2015

Normal Glycolytic Enzyme Activity Is Critical For Hypoxia Inducible Factor-1a Activity And Provides Novel Targets For Inhibiting Tumor Growth, Geoffrey Grandjean Phd

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Normal Glycolytic Enzyme Activity is Critical for Hypoxia Inducible Factor-1α Activity and Provides Novel Targets for Inhibiting Tumor Growth

By Geoffrey Grandjean

Advisory Professor: Garth Powis, D. Phil

Unique to proliferating cancer cells is the observation that their increased need for energy is provided by a high rate of glycolysis followed by lactic acid fermentation in a process known as the Warburg Effect, a process many times less efficient than oxidative phosphorylation employed by normal cells to satisfy a similar energy demand [1]. This high rate of glycolysis occurs regardless of the concentration of oxygen in the cell and is ...


Sustained Adrenergic Signaling Promotes Cervical Cancer Progression, Nouara C. Sadaoui Dec 2014

Sustained Adrenergic Signaling Promotes Cervical Cancer Progression, Nouara C. Sadaoui

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Background: Chronic stress and sustained adrenergic signaling are known to promote tumor progression. The underlying mechanisms behind this process are not well understood. We examined the effects of sustained adrenergic signaling on cervical cancer progression through increased expression of HPV oncogenes, E6 and E7.

Materials and Methods: ADRβ expression levels were examined in patient-derived cervical cancer samples. We used an orthotopic model of cervical cancer to investigate the effects of restraint stress on tumor growth and metastasis. We evaluated the in vivo effects of a β-blocker, propranolol, and HPV E6/E7 siRNA. In vitro, ADRβ positive cervical cancer cells were ...


Novel Posttranslational Modification In Lkb1 Activation And Function, Szu-Wei Lee Dec 2014

Novel Posttranslational Modification In Lkb1 Activation And Function, Szu-Wei Lee

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Cancer cells display dramatic alterations in cellular metabolism to meet their needs of increased growth and proliferation. In the last decade, cancer research has brought these pathways into focus, and one emerging issue that has come to attention is that many oncogenes and tumor-suppressors are intimately linked to metabolic regulation (Jones and Thompson, 2009). One of the key tumor-suppressors involved in metabolism is Liver Kinase B1 (LKB1). LKB1 is the major upstream kinase of the evolutionarily conserved metabolic sensor—AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Activation of the LKB1/AMPK pathway provides a survival advantage for cells under energy stress. LKB1 forms ...


Mdm2-Mediated Degradation Of Sirt6 Phosphorylated By Akt1 Promotes Tumorigenesis And Trastuzumab Resistance In Breast Cancer, Umadevi Thirumurthi Dec 2014

Mdm2-Mediated Degradation Of Sirt6 Phosphorylated By Akt1 Promotes Tumorigenesis And Trastuzumab Resistance In Breast Cancer, Umadevi Thirumurthi

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Sirtuin6 (SIRT6) is one of the members of the Sirtuin family and functions as a longevity assurance gene by promoting genomic stability. It also regulates various cancer-associated pathways and was recently established as a bonafide tumor suppressor in colon cancer. This suggests that SIRT6 is an attractive target for pharmacological activation in cancer treatment, and hence, identification of potential regulators of SIRT6 would be an important and critical contribution towards cancer treatment. Here, we show that AKT1 phosphorylates SIRT6 at Ser338 and induces MDM2-SIRT6 interaction, priming SIRT6 for degradation via the MDM2-dependent ubiquitin-proteasome pathway. Blocking SIRT6 Ser338 phosphorylation ...


Targeting Cox-2 And Rank In Aggressive Breast Cancers: Inflammatory Breast Cancer And Triple-Negative Breast Cancer, Monica Elizabeth Reyes Dec 2014

Targeting Cox-2 And Rank In Aggressive Breast Cancers: Inflammatory Breast Cancer And Triple-Negative Breast Cancer, Monica Elizabeth Reyes

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) and triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) are two highly aggressive breast cancer subtypes associated with a poor outcome. Despite sensitivity to current treatment, these breast cancers subtypes have a high recurrence rate and proclivity to metastasize early. The aggressiveness of IBC and TNBC have been linked to CSCs and epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT), which are critical features of breast cancer progression and metastasis. The clinical challenge faced in the treatment of IBC and TNBC is finding a treatment strategy to target the cancer stem-like (CSC) population to block metastasis. Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and receptor activator of nuclear ...


Strategies To Sensitize Bladder Cancer Cells To Small Molecule Inhibitors Targeting The Pi3k Pathway, Giovanni Nitti Aug 2014

Strategies To Sensitize Bladder Cancer Cells To Small Molecule Inhibitors Targeting The Pi3k Pathway, Giovanni Nitti

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

After many years of cancer research, it is well accepted by the scientific community that the future cure for this disease lies in a personalized therapeutic approach. Anticipating therapeutic outcome based on the genetic signature of a tumor has become the new paradigm. The PI3K pathway represents an ideal target for bladder cancer, as many of the key proteins of this pathway are altered or mutated in this particular type of cancer. Several small molecule inhibitors have been developed to target this pathway, but their efficacy has been shown to be heterogeneous among different cell lines and mostly cytostatic but ...


Characterization Of Jak, Stat, And Src Interactions In Head And Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Reshma Jaseja, Reshma Jaseja Aug 2013

Characterization Of Jak, Stat, And Src Interactions In Head And Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma, Reshma Jaseja, Reshma Jaseja

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Recurrence of Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma (HNSCC) is common; thus, it is essential to improve the effectiveness and reduce toxicity of current treatments. Proteins in the Src/Jak/STAT pathway represent potential therapeutic targets, as this pathway is hyperactive in HNSCC and it has roles in cell migration, metastasis, proliferation, survival, and angiogenesis. During short-term Src inhibition, Janus kinase (Jak) 2, and signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) 3 and STAT5 are dephosphorylated and inactivated. Following sustained Src inhibition, STAT5 remains inactive, but Jak2 and STAT3 are reactivated following their early inhibition. To further characterize the mechanism ...


Lmw-E Mediates Mammary Tumorigenesis By Deregulating Acinar Morphogenesis & Generating Cancer Stem Cells, Mylinh T. Duong May 2012

Lmw-E Mediates Mammary Tumorigenesis By Deregulating Acinar Morphogenesis & Generating Cancer Stem Cells, Mylinh T. Duong

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

Cyclin E is the regulatory subunit of the cyclin E/CDK2 complex that

mediates the G1-S phase transition. N-terminal cleavage of cyclin E by elastase in

breast cancer generates two low molecular weight (LMW) isoforms that exhibit both

enhanced kinase activity and resistance to p21 and p27 inhibition compared to fulllength cyclin E. Clinically, approximately 27% of breast cancer patients overexpress

LMW-E and associate with poor survival. Therefore, we hypothesize that LMW-E

disrupts normal mammary acinar morphogenesis and serves as the initial route into

breast tumor development. We first demonstrate that LMW-E overexpression in

non-tumorigenic hMECs is sufficient to induce ...


Increased Geranylgeranylated K-Ras Contributes To Antineoplastic Effects Of Farnesyltransferase Inhibitors., Mandy A. Hall May 2012

Increased Geranylgeranylated K-Ras Contributes To Antineoplastic Effects Of Farnesyltransferase Inhibitors., Mandy A. Hall

UT GSBS Dissertations and Theses (Open Access)

The Ras family of small GTPases (N-, H-, and K-Ras) is a group of important signaling mediators. Ras is frequently activated in some cancers, while others maintain low level activity to achieve optimal cell growth. In cells with endogenously low levels of active Ras, increasing Ras signaling through the ERK and p38 MAPK pathways can cause growth arrest or cell death. Ras requires prenylation – the addition of a 15-carbon (farnesyl) or 20-carbon (geranylgeranyl) group – to keep the protein anchored into membranes for effective signaling. N- and K-Ras can be alternatively geranylgeranylated (GG’d) if farnesylation is inhibited but are preferentially ...