Regina Graham, PhD
- Research Assistant Professor
- Research Director, UM Brain Tumor Initiative
glioblastoma, neuronal stem cells
Despite multimodality treatment, the prognosis for glioblastoma (GBM) remains poor, with an average survival of 1-2 years. Given the heterogeneity and aggressiveness of the disease, there is a high medical need for novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets.
I am a molecular and cellular biologist by training, with extensive mammalian cell culture experience. I have currently generated and characterized GBM stem cell lines from patient tumors and have begun investigating the cytotoxic effects of FDA approved and natural products. Previously my research has focused on neuroblastoma, a cancer that often metastasizes to the bone marrow. I have been able to generate both 2D (adherent) and 3D (floating spheres) cell lines from the bone marrow aspirates of neuroblastoma patients. I have characterized these cell lines using immunocytochemistry and evaluated their response to various therapeutic agents. I am currently focused on targeting tumor cell metabolism. At Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, my work was focused on the immediate early gene, c-fos and signal transduction pathways. As a graduate student at Tulane University I used transgenic mice with altered airway innervation to examine the role of sensory nerves in ozone-induced lung inflammation. As a postdoc my work focused on cardiovascular disease, including therapeutic angiogenesis for peripheral artery disease as well as evaluating the role of the apoptotic protein BNIP3 in cardiomyocyte apoptosis. In addition, I spearheaded research on the activation of BNIP3 to induce breast cancer cell death both in vitro and in vivo. I believe my extensive research experience underlies my ability to undertake new research projects and gives me the scientific prowess to be an integral part of this multifaceted project.