Alexander Pertsemlidis, Ph.D.

Alexander Pertsemlidis, Ph.D.

Institution: University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio

Project: MicroRNAs May Help Control Cancer Spread

Grant(s): Lung Cancer Discovery Award

MicroRNAs are a class of molecules that cells use to regulate many different physiological processes. All cancers, including lung cancer, exhibit irregular expression of microRNAs. Recent work has shown that cells can export microRNAs, affecting neighboring cells and those at great distances. These are attractive as leading indicators of cancer spread and potential therapeutic targets. Without cell-specific labeling, it is impossible to distinguish microRNA molecules made by one cell from those made by another. Major questions therefore remain: Which microRNAs are transferred? Where do they go? Can the transfer be exploited? We will engineer cancer cells to label the microRNAs that they produce and use those cells to induce tumors in mice. This will allow us to identify the microRNA species sent out from tumor cells and to map where these microRNAs are received. We will validate candidate microRNAs, including several already identified, for their ability to control metastasis, providing new therapeutic strategies.

Freedom From Smoking Clinic
, | Oct 25, 2021
Lung Mind Alliance Convening
, | Dec 08, 2021