Childhood Cancer

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Targeting Choline Kinase in AT/RT

Dickinson College
Orlandi Valencia Novak
Grant Type: 
POST Program Grants
Year Awarded: 
Type of Childhood Cancer: 
Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid Tumor (AT/RT)
Project Description: 

Atypical teratoid/rhabdoid (AT/RT) tumor is the most common brain tumor of infancy. The vast majority of these young children do not survive their disease. New therapies are desperately needed. We have identified activation of a protein known as choline kinase in AT/RT. We find that a drug called CK37 inhibits choline kinase in AT/RT and can kill tumor cells. We find that choline kinase also downregulates the mTOR pathway and the MAP kinase pathway in the dish. We have found that these pathways are upregulated in AT/RT in. 

Project Goal
Our goal for this POST award is to determine if choline kinase inhibitors will kill AT/RT cells from the different subtypes of AT/RT. We will also perform studies to determine if murine models will tolerate CK37 and if the drug will lead to decreased tumor growth in the models. At the end of the project, we will have determined if CK37 or other choline kinase inhibitors will work to slow AT/RT tumor growth.

Mentored by Dr. Eric Raabe 
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD

Co-funded by: 
Love Your Melon