Kenneth S. Ramos

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MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules that negatively control expression of target genes in animals and plants. The microRNA-21 gene (mir-21) has been identified as the only miRNA commonly overexpressed in solid tumors of the lung, breast, stomach, prostate, colon, brain, head and neck, esophagus and pancreas. We initiated a screen to(More)
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are ubiquitous contaminants in the environment. Benzo[a]pyrene (BaP), a prototypical member of this class of chemicals, has been extensively studied for its toxic effects in laboratory animals and human populations. BaP toxicity is often mediated by oxidative metabolism to reactive intermediates that interact with(More)
The tumor suppressor p53, encoded by the TP53 gene, is recognized as the guardian of the human genome because it regulates many downstream genes to exercise its function in cell cycle and cell death. Recent studies have revealed that several microRNAs (miRNAs) are important components of the p53 tumor suppressor network with miR-125b and miR-504 directly(More)
Repeated cycles of vascular injury by benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) increase the onset and progression of atherosclerotic lesions in laboratory animals. This atherogenic response is partly mediated by activation of cis-acting antioxidant/electrophile response elements that enhance c-Ha-ras transcription in vascular smooth muscle cells (vSMCs). Activation of(More)
In this report we present the findings from a nanotoxicology workshop held 6-7 April 2006 at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC. Over 2 days, 26 scientists from government, academia, industry, and nonprofit organizations addressed two specific questions: what information is needed to understand the human health impact of(More)
Benzo(a)pyrene (BaP), is an environmental pollutant present in tobacco smoke and a byproduct of fossil fuel combustion which likely contributes to the tumorigenic processes in human cancers including lung and esophageal. Long Interspersed Nuclear Element-1 (LINE-1) or L1 is a mobile element within the mammalian genome that propagates via a "copy-and-paste"(More)
2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) and similar environmental contaminants have been demonstrated to be potent cardiovascular teratogens in developing piscine and avian species. In the present study, we investigated the effects of TCDD on gene expression during murine cardiovascular development. C57Bl6N pregnant mice were dosed with 1.5, 3.0, or 6.0(More)
Ahr is a ligand-activated bHLH/PAS transcription factor involved in cytochrome P450 (CYP) gene regulation and murine susceptibility to atherogenic stimuli. The present studies were conducted to examine constitutive and inducible expression of Cyp1a1 and Cyp1b1 in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) from Ahr(+/+) and Ahr(-/-) mice. Cyp1a1 mRNA was not(More)
Long interspersed nuclear elements (LINEs or L1 elements) are targeted for epigenetic silencing during early embryonic development and remain inactive in most cells and tissues. Here we show that E2F-Rb family complexes participate in L1 elements epigenetic regulation via nucleosomal histone modifications and recruitment of histone deacetylases (HDACs)(More)