Thomas J. Rutherford

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The predominance of autoimmune diseases among women suggests that estrogen may modulate immune function. Monocytes and macrophages are important in initiating, maintaining, and resolving inflammatory responses through cell-signaling molecules, which control immune cell survival. One important mechanism of cell survival is mediated by the Fas/Fas ligand(More)
INTRODUCTION Early identification of chemoresistance in patients with ovarian cancer is of utmost importance in order to provide them with the most appropriate therapy. Recently, we described the expression of MyD88 in ovarian cancer cells that were resistant to the cytotoxic agent paclitaxel. In addition to chemoresistance, in MyD88 positive ovarian cancer(More)
Cancer stem cells are responsible for sustaining the tumor and giving rise to proliferating and progressively differentiating cells. However, the molecular mechanisms regulating the process of cancer stem cell (CSC) differentiation is not clearly understood. Recently, we reported the isolation of the epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) stem cells (type(More)
The Fas/Fas ligand (FasL) system has been suggested to play an important role in the establishment of an immune privilege status of the tumor by inducing Fas-mediated apoptosis in tumor-specific lymphocytes. However, the role of cell surface-expressed FasL in tumor cell protection has recently become controversial. In this study, we have demonstrated that(More)
Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a critical process for embryogenesis but is abnormally activated during cancer metastasis and recurrence. This process enables epithelial cancer cells to acquire mobility and traits associated with stemness. It is unknown whether epithelial stem cells or epithelial cancer stem cells are able to undergo EMT, and(More)
PROBLEM The NFκB pathway is a major source of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which may contribute to cancer chemoresistance. We showed that constitutive NFκB activity is characteristic of the ovarian cancer stem cells (OCSCs). The aim of this study is to determine whether the inhibition of NFκB by Eriocalyxin B (EriB) in the OCSCs may induce cell death in(More)
Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the most lethal gynecologic malignancy. Despite initial responsiveness, 80% of EOC patients recur and present with chemoresistant and a more aggressive disease. This suggests an underlying biology that results in a modified recurrent disease, which is distinct from the primary tumor. Unfortunately, the management of(More)
Epithelial ovarian cancer stem cells (EOC stem cells) have been associated with recurrence and chemoresistance. CD44 and CK18 are highly expressed in cancer stem cells and function as tools for their identification and characterization. We investigated the association between the number of CD44+ EOC stem cells in ovarian cancer tumors and progression-free(More)
Germline variants in the 3' untranslated region (3'UTR) of cancer genes disrupting microRNA (miRNA) regulation have recently been associated with cancer risk. A variant in the 3'UTR of the KRAS oncogene, referred to as the KRAS variant, is associated with both cancer risk and altered tumor biology. Here, we test the hypothesis that the KRAS variant can act(More)
BACKGROUND Development of innovative, effective therapies against recurrent/chemotherapy-resistant ovarian cancer remains a high priority. Using high-throughput technologies to analyze genetic fingerprints of ovarian cancer, we have discovered extremely high expression of the genes encoding the proteins claudin-3 and claudin-4. METHODS Because claudin-3(More)