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author:("campion, Mara")
1.  HtrA Serine Proteases as Potential Therapeutic Targets in Cancer 
Current cancer drug targets  2009;9(4):451-468.
The human HtrA family of serine proteases consists of four members: HtrA1, HtrA2, HtrA3 and HtrA4. Although prokaryotic HtrA proteins are well characterized in their dual roles as chaperones and proteases that degrade misfolded proteins in the periplasm, some members of mammalian HtrA proteins are described as potential modulators of programmed cell death and chemotherapy-induced cytotoxicity. Goal of this review article is to describe the molecular alterations associated with these HtrA serine proteases and how these alterations may be associated with tumor behavior and response to chemotherapy. We will also discuss evidence that chemotherapeutic drugs regulate the expression and activation of HtrA serine proteases and that these proteases contributes to programmed cell death. Finally, we will discuss the potential role of epigenetic therapy in targeting the expression and activation of HtrA serine proteases and the mechanisms by which these proteases enhance cytotoxic effect of conventional chemotherapy.
PMCID: PMC3905973  PMID: 19519315
2.  Tumor Suppressors and Cell-Cycle Proteins in Lung Cancer 
The cell cycle is the cascade of events that allows a growing cell to duplicate all its components and split into two daughter cells. Cell cycle progression is mediated by the activation of a highly conserved family of protein kinases, the cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs). CDKs are also regulated by related proteins called cdk inhibitors grouped into two families: the INK4 inhibitors (p16, p15, p19, and p18) and the Cip/Kip inhibitors (p21, p27, and p53). Several studies report the importance of cell-cycle proteins in the pathogenesis and the prognosis of lung cancer. This paper will review the most recent data from the literature about the regulation of cell cycle. Finally, based essentially on the data generated in our laboratory, the expression, the diagnostic, and prognostic significance of cell-cycle molecules in lung cancer will be examined.
PMCID: PMC3189597  PMID: 22007345
3.  Human CHN1 mutations hyperactivate α2-chimaerin and cause Duane’s retraction syndrome 
Science (New York, N.Y.)  2008;321(5890):839-843.
The RacGAP molecule α2-chimaerin is implicated in neuronal signaling pathways required for precise guidance of developing corticospinal axons. We now demonstrate that a variant of Duane’s retraction syndrome, a congenital eye movement disorder in which affected individuals show aberrant development of axon projections to the extraocular muscles, can result from gain-of-function heterozygous missense mutations in CHN1 that increase α2-chimaerin RacGAP activity in vitro. A subset of mutations enhances α2-chimaerin membrane translocation and/or α2-chimaerin’s previously unrecognized ability to form a complex with itself. In ovo expression of mutant CHN1 alters the development of ocular motor axons. These data demonstrate that human CHN1 mutations can hyperactivate α2-chimaerin and result in aberrant cranial motor neuron development.
PMCID: PMC2593867  PMID: 18653847
4.  Identification of genes down-regulated during lung cancer progression: A cDNA array study 
Lung cancer remains a major health challenge in the world. Survival for patients with stage I disease ranges between 40–70%. This suggests that a significant proportion of patients with stage I NSCLC may actually be under-staged.
In order to identify genes relevant for lung cancer development, we carried out cDNA array experiments employing 64 consecutive patients (58 men and 6 women) with a median age of 58 years and stage 1 or stage 2 non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Basic cDNA array data identified 14 genes as differentially regulated in the two groups. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis confirmed an effective different transcriptional regulation of 8 out of 14 genes analyzed. The products of these genes belong to different functional protein types, such as extra-cellular matrix proteins and proteases (Decorin and MMP11), genes involved in DNA repair (XRCC1), regulator of angiogenesis (VEGF), cell cycle regulators (Cyclin D1) and tumor-suppressor genes (Semaphorin 3B, WNT-5A and retinoblastoma-related Rb2/p130). Some previously described differences in expression patterns were confirmed by our array data. In addition, we identified and validated for the first time the reduced expression level of some genes during lung cancer progression.
Comparative hybridization by means of cDNA arrays assisted in identifying a series of novel progression-associated changes in gene expression, confirming, at the same time, a number of previously described results.
PMCID: PMC2556648  PMID: 18793406

Results 1-4 (4)