This subproject is one of many research subprojects utilizing the resources provided by a Center grant funded by NIH/NCRR. Primary support for the subproject and the subproject's principal investigator may have been provided by other sources, including other NIH sources. The Total Cost listed for the subproject likely represents the estimated amount of Center infrastructure utilized by the subproject, not direct funding provided by the NCRR grant to the subproject or subproject staff. Our long range goal is to define the mechanisms responsible for tobacco induced alterations in epithelial cells to inform the development of culturally relevant tobacco cessation interventions and clinical therapeutics to address health outcomes of tobacco users. The objective of this proposal is to define the alterations in oral epithelial cells resulting from exposure to the smokeless tobacco product iqmik and to define the efficacy of the Alaska bog blueberry as a nutriceutical intervention. We will achieve this goal by testing the central hypothesis that iqmik increases the levels of inflammatory mediators and DNA adducts in oral epithelial cells and that these changes can be ameliorated by blueberry treatment. At the completion of this project, we expect to understand the changes in oral epithelial cells that occur with iqmik exposure which will allow the mechanisms controlling these alterations to be defined. Consequently, the results will identify potential targets for therapeutic intervention in the regulation of oral epithelial function during smokeless tobacco exposure, as well as provide the basis for in vivo modeling of health outcomes and pharmaceutical interventions.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Center for Research Resources (NCRR)
Exploratory Grants (P20)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRR1-RI-4 (01))
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University of Alaska Fairbanks
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