The tentative topic of investigation for Phase II will be the role of growth regulating peptides in the initiation and promotion of carcinomas of the gastrointestinal tract and pancreas. There is no widely effective treatment for adenocarcinoma of the pancreas. The central hypothesis is that the establishment of autocrine stimulation by endogenous growth factors or the inhibition of an inhibitory autocrine loop may contribute to the growth potential of neoplastic pancreatic tissue. I plan to examine cultured pancreatic carcinoma cells for production of transforming growth factors (TGF) alpha and beta for the presence of TGF receptors and for the growth-stimulatory or inhibitory responsiveness to TGF. I further plan to determine whether the gastrointestinal hormones which cause in vivo pancreatic growth in rodents can induce alterations of TGF production, TGF receptors or in vitro responsiveness to TGF. Identification and possibly manipulation of growth factors and growth inhibition provide a potential means of cancer prevention and a potential treatment of established cancer.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Physician Scientist Award (K11)
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University of Texas Medical Br Galveston
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United States
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