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Department of

Cancer Biology

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Two University of Cincinnati graduate students in Cancer and Cell Biology, Marissa Leonard and Sasha Ruiz-Torres, Discuss Their Groundbreaking Breast Cancer Research

UC grad students: breast cancer research


Dopamine Discovery Could Aid In Breast Cancer Treatment!

Dr. Nira Ben-Jonathan of the Cancer Biology Department has discovered a novel approach to shrinking some forms of advanced breast cancer. 

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Congratulations to ...

Nick Brown  Raghav Pandey

Congratulations to Nick Brown and Raghav Pandey, Cancer & Cell Biology Graduate Students, on receiving this year's University Research Council (URC) Graduate Student Research Fellowship. There were 109 applicants to this year's fellowship with only 22% of the proposals reviewed were funded.  Great job Nick and Raghav for a great job in receiving this Fellowship!


Sasaki Receives Health Research Rising Star Award

Atsuo Sasaki, PhD, assistant professor in the Division of Hematology Oncology and member of the Brain Tumor Center at the UC Neuroscience Institute and UC Cancer Institute, has been chosen as the College of Medicine Health Research Rising Star Award Recipient. Sasaki will represent the college during Research Week 2016, April 18-22.

Research Week celebrates health-related research across the University of Cincinnati. Events include seminars, speakers, panels, poster sessions, expositions, competitions and workshops. Researchers, care providers, research participants, students, government leadership, local and national dignitaries and business leadership are all participating.

The Research Week 2016 opening ceremony will recognize rising stars in health research, an honor given to one junior faculty member in each college or affiliate. In addition to being recognized at the opening ceremony, a number of activities are planned throughout Research Week to enhance the visibility and impact of the awardees.


$1.8M NCI Award Helps Researcher Study Protein's Effect on Breast Cancer

CINCINNATI - Xiaoting Zhang, PhD, Associate Professor in the Department of Cancer Biology at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, has received a $1.8 million, five-year, R01 award (R01CA197865) from the National Cancer Institute to continue breast cancer research focusing on the function of the protein MED1 on HER2-positive breast cancer.

Cancer Biology Researcher Named 2015 AAAS Fellow


UC's Carolyn Price is being honored for her contributions to the field of telomere biology as a 2015 fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Date: 11/23/2015 11:00:00 AM
By: Katie Pence
Phone: 558-6052

DNA is the basis of existence for all living organisms.

When something goes wrong in DNA, which is made up of thousands of other components, it can cause any number of problems in a person's overall health.

That's why Carolyn Price's research is so important, and that's one of the reasons she has been named a 2015 fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Specifically, Price, PhD, who is a professor in the Department of Cancer Biology, is being honored for her contributions to the field of telomere biology in the area of telomere replication.

Her lab focuses on the structure and function of telomeres, the DNA-protein complexes that cap the ends of chromosomes. Telomeres are essential for genome stability as defects in their structure and/or failure to fully replicate the telomeric DNA lead to chromosome shortening and end-to-end fusion of chromosomes. This loss of telomere function can cause bone marrow failure and lung disease.

"I'm honored to be selected for such a prestigious distinction," she says. "Many esteemed colleagues have been named AAAS fellows, and I'm proud to be part of that group and happy that the importance of my research has been recognized."

Price received her PhD from the University of Colorado Medical Center in 1985 and completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1988, where she focused on telomere biology in Thomas Cech's lab.

The AAAS has awarded the distinction of fellow to 347 of its members this year. These individuals have been elevated to this rank because of their efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.

Price and the additional new fellows, which include UC's David Lentz, PhD, from the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, and Marc Cahay, PhD, from the College of Engineering and Applied Science, will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and blue rosette pin on Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2016 AAAS annual meeting in Washington, D.C.


COM Office of Graduate Education Honors Student Researchers

The Office of Graduate Education in the College of Medicine hosted the 36th annual Graduate Student Research Forum Oct. 27, 2015. The forum brings together graduate students, postdoctoral students and faculty for a poster session, speaker and awards ceremony.

This year’s event drew 81 student poster presenters, as well as 56 faculty and postdoctoral judges to the CARE/Crawley Atrium for scientific discourse. Each student poster was scored by two different non-affiliated judges, and the scores were combined to determine the top presenters.

After the morning poster session, students and faculty enjoyed the event’s keynote speaker, Bruce McEwen, PhD, Alfred E. Mirsky Professor, the Rockefeller University.  He presented the talk "Sex, Stress and the Brain: Hormone Actions over the Life Course via Novel Mechanisms.”

Graduate students in UC programs also received awards for their poster presentations.

Two first-place awards were given to Carolyn Rydyznski, immunology and Eric Smith, Cancer and Cell Biology and the MSTP Program. Second place was awarded to Nina Bertaux-Skeirik, systems biology and physiology, and third-place honors went to Marie Matrka, Cancer and Cell Biology. Four students were received honorable mentions: Vicky Gomez, molecular and developmental biology; Brittany Kopp, neuroscience; Amanda Stover, MPH in biostatistics, and Raghav Pandey, Cancer and Cell Biology.

Mark Baccei, PhD, associate professor in the Neuroscience Graduate Program, was awarded the Richard Akeson Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award.


Congratulations to Adam Price

MCK cropped

Adam Price, a Senior at Xavier University, conducting his senior research project in the laboratory of Dr. Maria Czyzyk-Krzeska in the Department of Cancer Biology won First Prize for poster presentation at the Sixth BHD Symposium and First International Upstate Kidney Cancer Symposium that took place on September 23-26, in Syracuse, New York. The poster title is “ VHL and FLCN tumor suppressors are positive regulator of autophagic program targeting midbodies for lysosomal degradation”. The work was co-authored by Adam D. Price, Megan E. Bischoff, Emily Stepanchick, Birgit Ehmer, Johnson Chu, Jarek Meller and Maria F. Czyzyk-Krzeska.


Eric Smith 2015 Recipient of the Robert and Emma Lou Cardell Fellowship

Great kudos to G3 student Eric Smith (in Susa Well’s lab), this year’s recipient of the Robert and Emma Lou Cardell Fellowship, which honors excellence in cancer and cell biological research.

Eric’s thesis work aims to determine a mechanistic function of the DEK oncogene in DNA repair. DEK is highly overexpressed in most tumor types, and the degree of overexpression is associated with advance stage disease, poor clinical outcomes, and chemotherapy resistance. Conversely, loss of DEK restores sensitivity to DNA-damaging chemotherapeutics. However, the mechanism linking the biochemistry of the DNA-binding and chromatin modifying DEK protein to chemoresistance remains unknown. Eric’s work demonstrated that DEK loss severely cripples the homologous recombination repair pathway. Eric pinpointed the site of DEK action by determining that DEK interacts with RPA and RAD51, opening a clear avenue towards the development of therapeutic small molecule inhibitors. The Selection Committee was particularly impressed with the potential impact of these findings.

Dr. and Mrs. Cardell established the Fellowship in 1999 and it is awarded each year to an advanced student in the Cancer and Cell Biology Graduate Program. Bob Cardell was Chair of Cell Biology for many years, building the Department into a nationally-recognized research unit, and was later Associate Dean for Graduate Education. Emma Lou Cardell was an outstanding electron microscopist, histologist and teacher. The Cardell Fellowship includes a $2,500 cash award that the recipient can use to further his/her professional development. In addition, the Fellow gives a special Departmental seminar attended by the Cardells.

Eric, congratulations and thanks for your hard work and impressive achievements!


Cancer & Cell Biology Graduate Students Stand Out at 2015 GSRF Poster Forum

The Office of Graduate Education hosted its 35th annual Graduate Student Research Forum on Friday, March 6, 2015. The forum brings together graduate students, postdoctoral students and faculty for a poster session, speaker and awards ceremony. This year’s event drew 55 student poster presenters, as well as 30 faculty and postdoctoral judges, to the CARE/Crawley Atrium for lively scientific discussions.

Each graduate student poster was scored by two different non-affiliated judges, and the scores were combined to determine the top presenters. First-place award went to Rahul D’Mello, in the Medical Scientist Training Program Division of Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology, while second-place prizes were awarded to Marie Matrka in the graduate program of Cancer and Cell Biology and Carolyn Rydyznski in the Division of Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology. Third- place honors were awarded to Alexander Ross in the Department of Pharmacology and Cell Biophysics and Jennifer Schwanekamp in the Department of Molecular Genetics, Biochemistry and Microbiology.

Honorable mentions include: Mark Althoff and Nicholas Brown, both in the graduate program in Cancer Biology; Catherine Chaton, Swati Tiwari and Cameron McDaniel, all in the Department of Molecular Genetics, Biochemistry and Microbiology; George Gardner in the Department of Pharmacology and Cell Biophysics; and Jared Klarquist in the Division of Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology.


 

Ben-Jonathan Featured on Fox 19

Dr. Nira Ben-Jonathan Professor of Cancer Biology, talks about her recent breast cancer research on Fox 19.


Guan Article Named ‘Most Read’ by Journal

An article by Jun-Lin Guan, PhD, Francis Brunning Endowed Chair and professor of cancer biology, was recently listed as on of the "Most Read Articles" in the past five days from the journal Genes and Development. Guan was senior author of the paper "p62/SQSTM1 synergizes with autophagy for tumor growth in vivo" and co-authored it with colleagues from the University of Michigan Medical School and Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center.


Czyzyk-Krzeska Wins College of Medicine Planning Grant

The UC College of Medicine announces the first awardees of the College of Medicine Planning Grants. Our own Dr. Maria Czyzyk-Kreska, Professor in the Department of Cancer Biology with an affiliation at the Cincinnati Department of Veterans Affairs medical Center is one of the two recipients of this award. 

Dr. Czyzyk-Krzeska was awarded $25,000 for her proposal.  She will work with co-principal investigators David Hui, PhD, Professor in the Department of Pathology and Michael Borchers, PhD, Associate Professor in Internal Medicine and collaborating investigators Patrick Limbach, PhD, Chemistry and Jaroslaw Meller, PhD, Environmental Health and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center to obtain pilot data directly supporting a novel collaborative and interdisciplinary research program studying the connection between the effects of two recognized risk factors in cancer: tobacco smoking and obesity.  "Molecular Mechanisms by Which Tobacco Smoke (TS) and Obesity (OB) Predispose to Cancer Development.


Waltz to Serve on NIH Study Section

Susan Waltz, PhD, professor of cancer biology, has been asked to serve on the Cancer Molecular Pathology Study Section for the National Institutes of Health, for the term beginning July 1, 2014 and ending June 30, 2020.

The Cancer Molecular Pathobiology [CAMP] Study Section reviews applications involving the pathology of the malignant cell with the emphasis on mechanisms controlling cell growth and death, and the molecular events in gene regulation. Emphasis is on pathological approaches to oncogenesis and the basic cellular events involving growth of transformed cells in animal models, with more translational studies in human cells.


Plas Invited to Serve on NIH Study Section

David Plas, PhD, associate professor of cancer biology, has accepted an invitation to serve on the Tumor Cell Biology Study Section, Center for Scientific Review at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Study sections review grant applications submitted to the NIH, make recommendations to the appropriate NIH national advisory council or board and survey the status of research in their fields of science.

Members are selected on the basis of their demonstrated competence and achievement in their scientific discipline as evidenced by the quality of research accomplishments, publications in scientific journals and other significant scientific activities, achievements and honors.


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