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Cancer Biology Research Center

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Background

Mission

The CBC was formed in 1999 with common interests and goals shared by several faculty members in the School of Pharmacy. The goal is to determine molecular mechanisms of cancer malignancy with specific aims to develop advanced anti-cancer therapeutics for effective clinical treatment.

Over the last 10 years, the CBC has significantly expanded into three major cancer research areas: Chemoprevention, Cancer Biology, and Experimental Therapeutics. More than 20 research grants with total support of >$10 million research dollars were obtained from NIH, DOD, CPRIT, and other funding agencies. Currently, the CBC has more than 1.5 million dollars annually, which support various biomedical and pharmaceutical research projects.This is a remarkable achievement reflecting the members’ effort and dedication considering the current funding scenario.

Through intensive collaborative and innovative research, the CBC members have made numerous discoveries and published more than 100 articles in highly peer-reviewed journals including Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Oncogene, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, Molecular Cancer, Molecular Pharmaceutics, JBC, Carcinogenesis, and other peer-reviewed journals. The CBC members also serve in various national committees, such as NIH Study Sections, DOD grant review panels, various journal editorial boards, and act as organizers & sections chairs for various local, national, and international cancer-related conferences

In summary the CBC is currently a vital research component in the School of Pharmacy and a major research force in the TTU system wide cancer research community.

 

The mission of the Cancer Biology Research Center (CBC) is to advance understanding, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer by generating new knowledge in cancer biology and therapy and by participating in the application of this knowledge to translational and clinical cancer research.

Research Groups

Based on members’ background and expertise, the CBC has been organized into three project targeted units:

1) Cancer Chemoprevention: studying natural products and chemicals that potentially prevent tumor initiation and progression.

2) Cancer Biology & Pathogenesis: studying multi-signaling cascades that regulate cancer malignancy and phenotype.

3) Cancer Therapeutics & Therapy: developing potential anti-cancer therapeutics and studying mechanisms to overcome cancer drug resistance.

The CBC also has an Advanced Cancer Cell Image/Analysis core.These advanced instruments allow the CBC members and their associates in-depth analysis of molecular events occurred during cancer progression and drug treatment.

Accomplishments

•Through collaborative and innovative research, the CBRC members have made numerous scientific discoveries and published more than 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals including:

•Nature Reviews Cancer, Nature Communication, Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Oncogene, Gastroenterology, Molecular Cancer, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, Molecular Pharmaceutics, Carcinogenesis, JNCI and others.

•More than ten provisional/PCT/patent applications were filed with several technology licenses granted for commercial development.

•The CBC members also serve in various national committees, such as NIH Study Sections, DOD grant panels, various journal editorial boards, and act as organizers & sections chairs for various local, national, and international cancer-related conferences

 

Key Findings

•RhoA activation is indispensable for embryonic development due to vascular deficiencies and basic cell functions;

•Endothelial RhoA inhibition blocks vascular leakage and can protect from anaphylactic shock-related death.

 •Identify MSP as a specific ligand for the RON receptor;

•Confirm RON as a cancer pathogenic factor;

•Validate RON as a drug target; and

•Develop novel anti-RON ADCs for clinical development.  

•Repurposed anti-psychotic drug for glioblastoma and metastatic breast cancer

•Identified Mcl-1 expression as the reason for resistance to BRAF inhibitor therapy in melanoma

•After in silico screening a library of 10 million compounds, identified 59 specific inhibitors of Mcl-1. Now developing them as drugs.

Goals for 2016-2017

•Request and secure funding from TTUHSC and School of Pharmacy to support the Cancer Biology Research Center's daily activity and research collaboration.

•Request SOP administration and Department chairs to hire new faculties with cancer research background.

•Planning for potential multi-PI grant  application.

•Strengthen current collaboration among Cancer Biology Research Center members.

Members
Dr. Wang

Ming-Hai Wang, M.D., Ph.D.

Center Director

Biomedical Sciences Dept

Amarillo, TX

Srivastava

Sanjay K. Srivastava, Ph.D.

Biomedical Sciences Dept 

Amarillo, TX

Dr. Liu

Xinli Liu, Ph.D.

Pharmaceutical Sciences Dept

Amarillo, TX

Dr. Srivenugopal

Kalkunte Srivenugopal, Ph.D.

Biomedical Sciences Dept

Amarillo, TX

Dr. Smith

Quentin Smith, Ph.D.

School of Pharmacy Dean

Pharmaceutical Sciences

Amarillo, TX

Dr. Zhang

Ruiwen Zhang, M.D., Ph.D.

Pharmaceutical Sciences Dept

Amarillo, TX

Updated 10/20/16
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