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Iris J. Edwards, PhD

Associate Professor of Pathology (Tumor Biology)

Tel: 336-716-2677336-716-2677
Fax: 336-716-6279

Current Research:

  • Anti-cancer mechanisms of dietary omega -3 fatty acids
  • Proteoglycans in breast and prostate cancer
  • Regulation of syndecan 1 by omega-3 fatty acids
  • Syndecan 1 mediated apoptosis

The focus of my research is the investigation of dietary fatty acids as tumor preventive or promoting agents.  In addition, my interest is in defining a role for proteoglycans in breast and prostate cancer. Our studies are testing the hypothesis that cell surface proteoglycans are important mediators of the tumorigenic properties of a cell and that proteoglycan metabolism is a level of regulation of the tumorigenic potential of cells that is modified by n-3 dietary fatty acids. 

Using LDL from animals fed different dietary fats as a mechanism of fatty acid delivery, studies are being conducted to examine the effects of n-3 and n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids on proteoglycan synthesis by non-transformed and transformed human mammary cells and to define the role of proteoglycans in the proliferative and invasive properties of human breast cancer cells.  Our prostate cancer studies use a mouse model in which the tumor suppressor Pten is eliminated specifically in the prostate gland.  This allows spontaneous and rapid development of prostate cancer in this model. 

We are studying effects of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids-enriched diets on tumor progression in these animals with particular emphasis on n-3 PUFA induced changes in proteoglycans and tumor-protective mechanisms that are impacted by these changes.


Link to PubMed Database


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