Joan S. Lewis-Wambi

University of Kansas Medical Center, USA


I am an Assistant Professor in the Cancer Biology Department at the University of Kansas Medical Center. I have a B.S. degree in Biochemistry (1996) and a Ph.D. in Cancer Biology, both from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey. I did my postdoctoral training at Northwestern University (Chicago, IL) in the laboratory of Dr. V. Craig Jordan, the world renowned scientist who discovered the clinical application of tamoxifen for the treatment and prevention of estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer. As a postdoc, I also studied the effects of long-term estrogen deprivation therapy on breast cancer using in vitro and in vivo models. From these studies, I discovered that long term estrogen deprivation of breast cancer cells leads to the development of hormone independent growth and that treatment of these hormone-independent (i.e. resistant) cells with estrogen caused them to undergo apoptosis . My current area of research involves identifying novel pathways of endocrine resistance in breast cancer and applying that knowledge to develop alternative treatment options for patients with resistant and metastatic disease. In particular, my laboratory focuses on how breast cancer cells develop resistance to endocrine therapies such as tamoxifen and aromatase inhibitors and the mechanism by which these resistant cells undergo apoptosis in the presence estrogen. My laboratory is also interested in studying the invasive and metastatic potential of endocrine-resistant breast cancer and elucidating the in vitro and in vivo mechanisms by which resistant cells invade and metastasize. I have over 40 peer-reviewed publications and my work has been presented at national and international meetings. I have also served as a scientific reviewer for the Department of Defense, the American Cancer Society, and the California Breat Cancer Research Program.

Biography Updated on 16 April 2013

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