Breast cancer is a major health problem with mortality rate of patients remains unacceptably high and unchanged for many decades despite progress in early disease detection and treatment of both early and advanced diseases. Studies of human breast cancers have identified a number of specific genetic and molecular lesions that play a role in many aspects of breast cancer progression from a relatively benign lesion in the breast to the highly aggressive cancer that spreads to many organs. These genetic changes include alterations in the structure and function of hormone receptors and oncogenes. Current research is to study the nature of these genetic changes in breast cancer. Our research may lead to the identification of novel therapeutic targets for improved treatments and prevention of the spread of breast cancer in women.
This research unit is made up of two laboratories: The Protein and Polypeptide Hormone Laboratory and The DNA Laboratory. This unit conducts research in the area of molecular endocrinology / cancer biology, with emphasis on the role of reproductive hormones in health (pregnancy / lactation) and disease (breast cancer) processes. Ongoing research projects are directed towards the study of the roles and molecular mechanisms of actions of protein and steroid hormones, as well as oncogenes and growth factors, in the regulation of growth and function of normal and cancer cells.
A multidisciplinary approach is used to conduct the above research, although molecular biology / recombinant DNA biotechnology, which encompasses such techniques as gene cloning and targeting in cell cultures and transgenic mice, is the major tool used. The research milieu is made up of a staff of experienced doctorate research associates and a support staff of skilled technologists and a secretary. The youth wing of this research unit is made up of a group of inspired post-doctoral fellows and graduate students.
Department of Physiology
P304 - Path Bldg
Tel 204 789 3327
Fax 204 789 3934