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Project Awards

2006

Ingo Mellinghoff, M.D.
University of California Los Angeles

Developing Biomarkers for Oncogenic EGFR Signaling in Glioblastoma

Clinical responses to EGFR kinase inhibitor therapy in glioblastoma are frequently transient due to the emergence of drug resistance and appear to be associated with specific mutations of the EGFR gene in tumor cells. In order to optimize the use of this promising class of therapeutics, it is critical to develop methods to periodically monitor drug target activity in tumor tissue non-invasively, i.e., without the need for a tumor biopsy.

Dr. Mellinghoff will use genetically engineered mouse strains that model different types of EGFR mutants found in human glioma to identify proteins or molecular signatures in blood samples that may serve as indicators or biomarkers for the extent of abnormal EGFR function in brain tumor cells.

The overall goal of these studies is to identify biomarkers in the preclinical setting for subsequent validation in blood samples from glioma patients treated with EGFR inhibitors. Findings from this study may provide opportunities for the non-invasive monitoring of EGFR kinase inhibition in glioblastoma and advance the use of EGFR kinase inhibitors for cancer.


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