Examining Cell-to-Cell Communication for Clues about Lung Cancer
Normal cells and tumor cells communicate with each other in similar ways. Often, the genes involved in communication in normal cells are "hijacked" by tumor cells to promote unregulated growth and survival. One mechanism of communication between cells that seems to be important in lung cancer is called the Notch signaling pathway. We will study how Notch is activated in lung cancer and what changes occur in cells as a consequence of this activation. Understanding how Notch proteins are activated in tumor cells may identify novel therapy approaches for non-small cell lung cancer.
Update: Our preliminary studies have begun to provide insight into Notch proteins. We have been able to perform RNA sequencing of Notch-positive and Notch-negative cells. We anticipate that the analysis of this sequencing will provide insight into the gene pathways that are altered by Notch activation in non-small cell lung cancer.