A variety of research projects from members of the AZCC are highlighted below

Cancer Biology and Genetics Program

Zhang J. Tsaprailis G. Bowden GT. Cancer Res. 68:1046-1054, 2008.

  • Anti-apoptotic Bcl-XL crucial for cell survival and implicated in differentialtion and development
  • Overexpression in certain cancers
  • Stability dependent on on 3’-UTR of Bcl-XL mRNA following UVA irradiation
  • Mechanism of stability unclear
  • LC-MS/MS used to identify nucleolin as one of protein binding to 3’-UTR of Bcl-XL mRNA following UVA irradiation

MS Strategy.jpg

Gastrointestinal Cancer Program

Uemura T. Yerushalmi HF. Tsaprailis G. Stringer DE. Pastorian KE. Hawel L. Byus CV. Gerner EW. J. Biol. Chem. 283:26428-26435, 2008.

  • Understanding polyamine transport may be important for new strategies of cancer treatment and chemoprevention
    • uptake/export role in colon cancer
  • Chinese hamster ovary cells sensitive to the diamine putrescine (CHOS)
  • Chinese hamster ovary cells tolerant to the diamine putrescine (CHOT)
    • Increased export of putrescine
  • Protein profiling changes in CHOS and CHOT cells via 1D and 2D SDS-PAGE and LC-MS/MS


  • SLC3A2 over expressed in CHOT
  • Proteomic finding led to knockout expts, use of human colon cancer cells
    • Knockout SLC3A2: inhibition by putrescine
    • Activated K-RAS cells: decreased SLC3A2 - regulation control
  • Model of transport proposed


Therapeutic Development Program

Leinweber BD. Tsaprailis G. Monk TJ. Lau SS. JASMS 20(1):89-95, 2009.

  • MALDI-TOF MS used to image protein localization and profiles in tissues
  • Novel techniques developed allows MALDI-TOF MS signals up to 50kDa


  • Eker (Tsc-2+/Ek) rats treated with TGHQ or saline (TGHQ carcinogen)
  • MALDI-TOF MS tissue imaging used to profile proteins in regions of interest (ROIs) TGQH-associated tumors
  • LC-MS/MS used to identify protein consistent with MALDI-TOF MS spectra