Identifying Phosphoproteins Interaction Signatures in Cell Responses Related to Breast Cancer

Identifying Phosphoproteins Interaction Signatures in Cell Responses Related to Breast Cancer
Krishnamoorthy and Gao Published in PLOS ONE

Jeffrey MindreboDepartment of Biology and Biochemistry faculty members, Srinivasan Krishnamoorthy, research assistant professor, and Xiaolian Gao, professor, published research findings this week in PLOS ONE.

The paper, “A Novel Phosphopeptide Microarray Based Interactome Map in Breast Cancer Cells Reveals Phosphoprotein-GRB2 Cell Signaling Networks,” posted to the online, open-access publication on June 27. PLOS ONE features reports of original research from all disciplines within science and medicine.

The cancer proteome is very complex and dynamic, orchestrated by signaling pathways that redirect protein-protein interactions mediating cellular responses during cancer progression as well as drug response and drug resistance.

The published work explores the possibility of identifying phosphoproteins that are pivotal in eliciting cellular responses during the process of normal cells becoming cancerous. These phosphoproteins have the potential as biomarkers to detect early cellular responses as a signature of cancer initiation and progression.

As drug targets, phosphoproteins are more refined in terms of developing drugs (targeted toward phosphomotifs) that are cancer-pathway specific but with the very least side effects. The goal is to develop drugs that avoid common side effects like cardiotoxicity in cancer patients during or after chemotherapy.

The protein interactome networks established in the study use a novel tyrosine phosphopeptide microarray-based cellular assay developed at Gao’s laboratory at the University of Houston. The lab team proposes to develop this technology toward screening of blood samples, which are minimally invasive when compared to tumor biopsies. They also want to help oncologists design early alternate strategies for effective cancer detection.

Also involved in the research from UH were Zhonghua Liu, a postdoctoral fellow now at Hunan Normal Univeristy, China; Ruijuan Zhu, a research specialist; and Haosi Chen, a graduate student. The team also worked with Ailing Hong, Tongbin Li, and Xiaochuan Zhou of LC Sciences, Houston.

The research was supported by Grant Number: R33 CA126209 from the National Cancer Institute through the program, Clinical Proteomic Technologies for Cancer (CPTC). The technology used was profiled in the CPTC online newsletter, eProtein, on page 7.

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