Developmental Cancer Therapeutics Research Program
The scientific goal of the Hollings Cancer Center Developmental Cancer Therapeutics Program is to discover and characterize unique agents and pathways that will impact the development of more effective cancer therapies and to translate these discoveries into clinical applications by using proof-of-principle, early phase clinical and correlative science studies.
The Developmental Cancer Therapeutics Program is co-led by Kenneth D. Tew, PhD, and Carolyn D. Britten, MD. This program is organized around three themes of scientific investigation and is a central hub where therapeutic-focused discoveries across all Hollings Cancer Center programs are translated into clinical studies. The three themes are: 1) Elucidation of Cellular Signaling Pathways; 2) Modulation of Redox and Cellular Stress Response; and 3) Development of Small Molecule Chemotherapeutic Agents.
FEATURED RESEARCH PROJECT
Elizabeth S. Yeh, PhD
Elizabeth Yeh, Assistant Professor of Cell and Molecular Pharmacology, examines how the deregulation of cellular signaling events results in the physiological changes that lead to human cancer, with a specific interest in breast cancer. While at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Yeh worked with Dr. Lewis Chodosh, who identified a novel AMPK-related protein kinase called Hormonally Up-regulated Neu-associated Kinase (HUNK), whose function has been determined to be critical in the etiology and progression of human breast cancer. Dr. Yeh’s work demonstrated that HUNK promotes the survival of breast cancer cells, further suggesting that this molecule could be a therapeutic target. In Dr. Yeh’s continued study of this molecule at MUSC, her lab is working to elucidate the intracellular mechanisms by which HUNK regulates survival signaling through the growth factor receptors, EGFR and HER2, two molecules that are commonly overrepresented in human breast cancer.