Molecular Signatures of Fibroid Tumor Progenitor Cells: Identification of Therapeutic Targets

Project: Research project

Project Details


Uterine fibroids represent the most common gynecologic tumor, and are a frequent
cause of heavy menstrual bleeding. There are currently no medical therapies approved
for the long-term treatment of fibroids, and surgical treatment comes at significant costs
to the patient and our health care system. Recent studies have shown that somatic
stem cells are necessary for the growth of human fibroid tumors; however, the molecular
characteristics of these tumor progenitor cells are currently unknown. While fibroid
tumor progenitor cells have traditionally been identified using the side population
technique, our laboratory has developed a superior method of isolating these cells using
cell surface markers. The objective of this study is to determine the differential gene
expression of fibroid tumor progenitor cells compared to fully differentiated fibroid cells
and identify critical gene pathways that may explain the pathogenesis of uterine fibroids.
This information may lead to the development of new treatment options, by targeting the
critical molecules in pathways elucidated during the proposed studies. Treatments
targeting progenitor cells are likely to not only treat current fibroids, but also prevent the
development and growth of new fibroids, thus preventing one of the major causes of
heavy menstrual bleeding.
Effective start/end date7/1/136/30/14


  • American Society for Reproductive Medicine (Ltr.5/3/13)


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