|Awarded On||August 20, 2014|
|Title||The Role of DIRAS3 (ARHI) in Initiating Autophagy and Tumor Dormancy|
|Award Mechanism||Individual Investigator|
|Institution/Organization||The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center|
|Principal Investigator/Program Director||Robert Bast|
Each year in our country, more than 22,000 women develop ovarian cancer. Despite progress in surgery and chemotherapy, the disease still proves lethal in 70% of cases. One reason for poor outcomes is the ability of metastatic ovarian cancer cells to remain dormant for years after treatment, only to grow progressively and kill patients. Little is understood of this process. Our group has developed the first mouse model for tumor dormancy in ovarian cancer and has shown that “autophagy” is required to maintain cancer cells in a nutrient poor environment with a poor blood supply. Through “autophagy” or “self-eating”, cancer cells consume their own parts to generate much needed energy. In earlie...