We propose a unique academic-industrial partnership between investigators at UCSD (Academic Partner) and AntiCancer (Industrial Partner) to develop and validate color-coded fluorescent imaging systems in mouse models of pancreatic cancer. The proposed research will facilitate advanced imaging technology, methods and tools for mouse-model studies. Findings from these studies will advance our knowledge of tumor- host interactions in pancreatic cancer and will lead to novel treatments for this almost uniformly fatal disease. Hypothesis Color-coded fluorescence imaging can distinguish pancreatic cancer cells from host angiogenic vessels and stromal cells and will be useful for evaluating selective anti-stromal agents.
Specific Aim 1 (Years 1-3) Development of color-coded imageable models of the pancreatic cancer microenvironment. We have developed a simple yet powerful new model for delineating the morphological events of tumor-induced angiogenesis using dual color fluorescence imaging. The host model is ND-GFP transgenic nude mouse, developed in our laboratory, in which nascent blood vessels are labeled with GFP and tumors are labeled with red fluorescent protein (RFP). We plan to color-code the tumor microenvironment of this model with stromal cells (macrophages, lymphocytes, dendritic, and bone marrow cells) harvested from ubiquitously-expressing GFP, RFP, CFP (blue) and GFP-RFP (yellow) transgenic immunocompetent mice.
Specific Aim 2 (Years 2-4) Development of a model system allowing real-time in-vivo imaging of murine lymphatics and intralymphatic cancer cell trafficking to facilitate the study of lymph node targeting by metastatic tumor cells. We are developing a model system allowing real-time in-vivo imaging of murine lymphatics and intralymphatic cancer cell trafficking to facilitate the study of lymph node targeting by metastatic tumor cells. The model utilizes RFP-labeled human pancreatic cancer cells and monoclonal anti-LYVE1 antibody to label lymphatic vessels in order to image lymphatic trafficking of tumor cells. Cells delivered to the lymphatic system are recorded on video in real-time leaving the inguinal lymph node and entering the axillary lymph node. The use of fluorescent LYVE-1 allows detailed imaging of tumor cell interaction with lymphatic vessel walls and valves, facilitating observation of the dynamics of intralymphatic cellular trafficking.
Specific Aim 3 (Years 3-5) Determination of the efficacy of novel anti-stromal therapies for pancreatic cancer in our color-coded fluorescent in vivo orthotopic and lymphatic mouse models. Several novel anti-stromal, anti-angiogenic, and anti-lymphangiogenic agents including monoclonal antibodies against integrins and small molecule inhibitors of angiogenesis will be tested for their efficacy in the novel color-coded pancreatic cancer microenvironment models developed in specific aims 1 and 2. These color-coded nude mouse models of human pancreatic cancer will be used to visualize new targets that should greatly enhance the discovery of anti-stromal, anti-angiogenic and anti-lymphangiogenic drugs for pancreatic cancer.

Public Health Relevance

Pancreatic cancer is a fatal disease with 5-year survival rates of only 1-4%. Clearly, new treatment strategies are needed. We propose a unique academic industrial partnership between investigators at the University of California San Diego (Academic Partner) and AntiCancer, Inc. (Industrial Partner) to develop and validate color-coded fluorescent imaging system in mouse models of pancreatic cancer that can be used for evaluation of new drugs.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-SBIB-S (50))
Program Officer
Menkens, Anne E
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of California San Diego
Schools of Medicine
La Jolla
United States
Zip Code
Lwin, Thinzar M; Murakami, Takashi; Miyake, Kentaro et al. (2018) Tumor-Specific Labeling of Pancreatic Cancer Using a Humanized Anti-CEA Antibody Conjugated to a Near-Infrared Fluorophore. Ann Surg Oncol 25:1079-1085
Strnadel, Jan; Choi, Sunkyu; Fujimura, Ken et al. (2017) eIF5A-PEAK1 Signaling Regulates YAP1/TAZ Protein Expression and Pancreatic Cancer Cell Growth. Cancer Res 77:1997-2007
DeLong, Jonathan C; Murakami, Takashi; Yazaki, Paul J et al. (2017) Near-infrared-conjugated humanized anti-carcinoembryonic antigen antibody targets colon cancer in an orthotopic nude-mouse model. J Surg Res 218:139-143
Hwang, Ho Kyoung; Murakami, Takashi; Kiyuna, Tasuku et al. (2017) Splenectomy is associated with an aggressive tumor growth pattern and altered host immunity in an orthotopic syngeneic murine pancreatic cancer model. Oncotarget 8:88827-88834
Yano, Shuya; Takehara, Kiyoto; Kishimoto, Hiroyuki et al. (2016) Adenoviral targeting of malignant melanoma for fluorescence-guided surgery prevents recurrence in orthotopic nude-mouse models. Oncotarget 7:18558-72
DeLong, Jonathan C; Hoffman, Robert M; Bouvet, Michael (2016) Current status and future perspectives of fluorescence-guided surgery for cancer. Expert Rev Anticancer Ther 16:71-81
Park, Jeong Youp; Murakami, Takashi; Lee, Jin Young et al. (2016) Fluorescent-Antibody Targeting of Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 Receptor Visualizes Metastatic Human Colon Cancer in Orthotopic Mouse Models. PLoS One 11:e0146504
Yano, Shuya; Takehara, Kiyoto; Miwa, Shinji et al. (2016) Improved Resection and Outcome of Colon-Cancer Liver Metastasis with Fluorescence-Guided Surgery Using In Situ GFP Labeling with a Telomerase-Dependent Adenovirus in an Orthotopic Mouse Model. PLoS One 11:e0148760
Yano, Shuya; Takehara, Kiyoto; Kishimoto, Hiroyuki et al. (2016) Tumor-targeting adenovirus OBP-401 inhibits primary and metastatic tumor growth of triple-negative breast cancer in orthotopic nude-mouse models. Oncotarget 7:85273-85282
Kaneda, Megan M; Cappello, Paola; Nguyen, Abraham V et al. (2016) Macrophage PI3K? Drives Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma Progression. Cancer Discov 6:870-85

Showing the most recent 10 out of 122 publications