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Personal profile

Research Interests

The main focus of my research program is to study roles of tumor suppressors in normal development and in breast and prostate cancer progression, focusing on Maspin and an Ets transcription factor PDEF. Maspin is a unique member of SERPIN family that plays roles in normal tissue development, tumor metastasis, and angiogenesis. Genetic studies by my laboratory using maspin transgenic and knockout mice demonstrated an important role of maspin in normal mammary, prostate, and embryonic development. Recently, we have identified several new properties of maspin. As a protein that is present on cell surface, maspin controls cell-ECM adhesion. This function is responsible for maspin-mediated suppression of tumor cell motility and invasion. We have also discovered that maspin is involved in the induction of tumor cell apoptosis through a mitochondrial death pathway. The long-term goals of these projects are to elucidate the molecular mechanisms by which maspin and PDEF control tumor metastasis and to identify their physiological functions in development. Another focus of research in Zhang lab is to identify immune components that control breast cancer metastasis. Chronic inflammation not only increases neoplastic transformation but also drives the inhibition of the immune response in a protective negative-feedback mechanism. Suppressive immune cells are recruited to the sites of inflammation and function to inhibit both innate and adaptive immune responses, enabling tumor tolerance and unmitigated tumor progression. To study the interplay between tumor and immune cells, Zhang lab has developed a unique animal model of breast cancer that reproduces different stages of breast cancer bone metastasis. Molecules that control tumor-immune cell interaction and immunosuppression have been identified. We are currently studying roles of these genes in tumor-driven evolution that control chronic inflammation and immunosuppression.

Training Experience

1993Postdoctoral Fellowship, Duke University
1997Postdoctoral Fellowship, Harvard Medical School

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, State University of New York

… → 1992

Research interests

  • Angiogenesis
  • Breast Cancer
  • Cancer Biology
  • Cancer Genetics
  • Cell Biology
  • Inflammation
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Vascular Biology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Ming Zhang is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 21 Similar Profiles
Breast Neoplasms Medicine & Life Sciences
Neoplasms Medicine & Life Sciences
Neoplasm Metastasis Medicine & Life Sciences
Breast Medicine & Life Sciences
Tumors Chemical Compounds
Serpins Medicine & Life Sciences
SERPIN-B5 Medicine & Life Sciences
Cells Chemical Compounds

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Grants 2006 2017

Breast Neoplasms
Neoplasm Metastasis
Prostatic Neoplasms
Research Personnel
Translational Medical Research
Advisory Committees

Research Output 1995 2019

Maspin binds to cardiolipin in mitochondria and triggers apoptosis

Mahajan, N., Hoover, B., Rajendram, M., Shi, H. Y., Kawasaki, K., Weibel, D. B. & Zhang, M., May 1 2019, In : FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. 33, 5, p. 6354-6364 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Cytochromes c
10 Citations (Scopus)

The STAT3 inhibitor pyrimethamine displays anti-cancer and immune stimulatory effects in murine models of breast cancer

Khan, M. W., Saadalla, A., Ewida, A. H., Al-Katranji, K., Al-Saoudi, G., Giaccone, Z. T., Gounari, F., Zhang, M., Frank, D. A. & Khazaie, K., Jan 1 2018, In : Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy. 67, 1, p. 13-23 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Breast Neoplasms
Tumor Microenvironment
2 Citations (Scopus)

An essential role of maspin in embryogenesis and tumor suppression — Response

Zhang, M., Hendrix, M. J. C., Pemberton, P. A., Sakr, W. A. & Sheng, S., Sep 15 2017, In : Cancer Research. 77, 18, p. 5208-5210 3 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalLetter

Embryonic Development
17 Citations (Scopus)

NSG mice provide a better spontaneous model of breast cancer metastasis than athymic (nude) mice

Puchalapalli, M., Zeng, X., Mu, L., Anderson, A., Glickman, L. H., Zhang, M., Sayyad, M. R., Wangensteen, S. M., Clevenger, C. V. & Koblinski, J. E., Sep 1 2016, In : PloS one. 11, 9, e0163521.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Nude Mice
breast neoplasms
Breast Neoplasms
Neoplasm Metastasis
1 Citation (Scopus)

Maspin is a multifunctional tumor- suppressing serpin

Shi, H. Y., Zhang, J. S. & Zhang, M., Jan 1 2015, The Serpin Family: Proteins with Multiple Functions in Health and Disease. Springer International Publishing, p. 127-152 26 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter