Paula Sommer

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Human small cell lung cancer (SCLC) is highly aggressive, and quickly develops resistance to therapy. SCLC cells are typically insensitive to glucocorticoids due to impaired glucocorticoid receptor (GR) expression. This is important as we have previously shown that expression of a GR transgene induces cell death in-vitro, and inhibits tumor growth in-vivo.(More)
Glucocorticoid (GC) receptors (GRs) have profound anti-survival effects on human small cell lung cancer (SCLC). To explore the basis of these effects, protein partners for GRs were sought using a yeast two-hybrid screen. We discovered a novel gene, FAM33A, subsequently identified as a SKA1 partner and involved in mitosis, and so renamed Ska2. We produced an(More)
CONTEXT Cortisol is released in ultradian pulses. The biological relevance of the resulting fluctuating cortisol concentration has not been explored. OBJECTIVE Determination of the biological consequences of ultradian cortisol pulsatility. DESIGN A novel flow through cell culture system was developed to deliver ultradian pulsed or continuous cortisol to(More)
Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) is an aggressive tumor, associated with ectopic ACTH syndrome. We have shown that SCLC cells are glucocorticoid receptor (GR) deficient, and that restoration of GR expression confers glucocorticoid sensitivity and induces apoptosis in vitro. To determine the effects of GR expression in vivo, we characterized a mouse SCLC(More)
Correct formation of the corneal endothelium is essential for continued development of the anterior segment of the eye. Corneal endothelial development is initiated at E12 when precursor peri-ocular mesenchyme cells migrate into the space between the lens and the presumptive corneal epithelium and begin to respond to signals from the lens, undergoing a(More)
Proper expression of the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) plays an essential role in the development of the lung. GR expression and signalling in the lung is manipulated by administration of synthetic glucocorticoids (Gcs) for the treatment of neonatal, childhood and adult lung diseases. In lung cancers, Gcs are also commonly used as co-treatment during(More)
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the cause of AIDS, one of the Worlds' deadliest infections, with approximately 34 million people currently infected with HIV. As a result, numerous HIV research has been carried out in the past 30 years, producing a large number of publications. This has highlighted the need for comprehensive, accurate and(More)
Glucocorticoids, through their interaction with the ubiquitous glucocorticoid receptor (GR), have extensive and disparate effects on different cells and tissues. They have long been used in the treatment of asthma, arthritis and autoimmune diseases based on their anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive effects. For these reasons, as well as for their(More)
The human heart is the first organ to develop and its development is fairly well characterised. In theory, the heart has the capacity to regenerate, as its cardiomyocytes may be capable of cell division and the adult heart contains a cardiac stem cell niche, presumably capable of differentiating into cardiomyocytes and other cardiac-associated cell types.(More)
  • Paula Sommer
  • South African medical journal = Suid-Afrikaanse…
  • 2011
Stem cells are seen as the 'magic bullet'; while this may be true, their efficacy and safety in patients has not yet been established unequivocally. This article summarises the different types of stem cells and gives an overview of their advantages and disadvantages, their use, and potential uses in the patient setting.