Golgi Trafficking Controlled by G-Proteins

A family of proteins called G proteins are a recognized component of the communication system the human body uses to sense hormones and other chemicals in the bloodstream and to send messages to cells. In work that further illuminates how cells work, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have discovered a new role for G proteins that may have relevance to halting solid tumor cancer metastasis.

The study is reported online April 9 in Developmental Cell.

“Our work provides the first direct evidence that G proteins are signaling on membranes inside cells, not just at the cell surface as has been widely believed for several decades,” said Pradipta Ghosh, MD, associate professor and senior author. “This is significant because the G-protein pathway is a target of at least 30 percent of all current drugs on the market.” … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Pradipta Ghosh, MDDr. Pradipta Ghosh, is associate professor of medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology.

Visit the Ghosh Laboratory website

See Full Text of Article in Developmental Cell (UC San Diego only)

Dr. Chip Schooley on “MERS, Ebola, Boeing and Bats” at Medicine Grand Rounds September 17

Dr. Robert T. "Chip" SchooleyDr. Robert T. “Chip” Schooley will speak on the topic “MERS, Ebola, Boeing and Bats” at Medicine Grand Rounds on September 17.  Dr. Schooley is professor of medicine, academic affairs vice chair of the Department of Medicine and chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at UC San Diego.

HIV Transmission Networks Mapped to Reduce Infection Rate

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have mapped the transmission network of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in San Diego. The mapping of HIV infections, which used genetic sequencing, allowed researchers to predictively model the likelihood of new HIV transmissions and identify persons at greatest risk for transmitting the virus. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom

Developmental Protein Plays Role in Spread of Cancer

A protein used by embryo cells during early development, and recently found in many different types of cancer, apparently serves as a switch regulating the spread of cancer, known as metastasis, report researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center in the June 15, 2013 issue of the journal Cancer Research. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Thomas Kipps

Dr. Thomas Kipps

Thomas Kipps, MD, PhD, Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research, is principal investigator of the study reported in Cancer Research.

Kipps is professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and deputy director of research at the UCSD Moores Cancer Center.

All study coauthors are affiliated with the Department of Medicine and the Moores Cancer Center.

Citation for the published study: Cui B, Zhang S, Chen L, Yu J, Widhopf GF II, Fecteau J-F, Rassenti LZ, and Kipps TJ. Targeting ROR1 Inhibits Epithelial–Mesenchymal Transition and Metastasis. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-12-3832 Cancer Res June 15, 2013 73; 3649  |  Read the abstract

Cholesterol Sets Off Chaotic Blood Vessel Growth

A study at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine identified a protein that is responsible for regulating blood vessel growth by mediating the efficient removal of cholesterol from the cells. Unregulated development of blood vessels can feed the growth of tumors.  … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Yury MillerYury Miller, MD, PhD, left, is senior author of the study report. He is associate professor of medicine in the Division of Endocrinology & Metabolism and faculty member in the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program.

He first joined UC San Diego as a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Joseph Witztum’s laboratory in 1998.

Miller is principal investigator of a National Institutes of Health R01 research grant, “Zebrafish Models of Vascular Inflammation and Atherosclerosis,” and a subproject of a P01 research program project with the La Jolla Institute of Allergy & Immunology, “Oxidized lipids and endotoxemia in vascular inflammation.”

Longhou Fang, PhDFirst author Longhou Fang, PhD, left, is a postdoctoral fellow in the Miller laboratory. He is the recipient of a National Institutes of Health K99 postdoctoral award for the project, “AIBP-mediated cholesterol efflux and angiogenesis.”

The other coauthors excepting Drs. Ulrich and Torres-Vásquez are affiliated with the Department of Medicine.

Dr. Philipp Wiesner.

Second-year internal medicine resident Philipp Wiesner, MD, right, who chose Miller as one of his mentors for the investigations he performed during his residency program research rotation, presented data from the vascular inflammation project at Medicine Grand Rounds on May 15.

Wiesner is also a coauthor of the study reported in Nature.

Citation for the study report:  Longhou Fang, Soo-Ho Choi, Ji Sun Baek, Chao Liu, Felicidad Almazan, Florian Ulrich, Philipp Wiesner, Adam Taleb, Elena Deer, Jennifer Pattison, Jesús Torres-Vázquez, Andrew C. Li & Yury I. Miller. Control of angiogenesis by AIBP-mediated cholesterol efflux. Nature (2013) doi:10.1038/nature12166. Published online 29 May 2013.  |  Read the full text (UCSD only)

More Information

Other UC San Diego news stories about Miller’s work:

Philipp Wiesner’s May 15 Medicine Grand Rounds presentation “Oxidized Phospholipids in Inflammation and Atherosclerosis”  |  Watch video (UCSD only)

Tumor-Activated Protein Promotes Cancer Spread

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center report that cancers physically alter cells in the lymphatic system – a network of vessels that transports and stores immune cells throughout the body – to promote the spread of disease, a process called metastasis.  … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Judith VarnerJudith Varner, PhD, is senior author of the study report. She is professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and an investigator in the Solid Tumor Therapeutics Program at the UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center.

Citation for the study report:
PI3Kα activates integrin α4β1 to establish a metastatic niche in lymph nodes. Barbara Garmy-Susini, Christie J. Avraamides, Jay S. Desgrosellier, Michael C. Schmid, Philippe Foubert, Lesley G. Ellies, Andrew M. Lowy, Sarah L. Blair, Scott R. Vandenberg, Brian Datnow, Huan-You Wang, David A. Cheresh, and Judith Varner. PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print May 13, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1219603110  |  Abstract  |  Read the article (PDF) (UCSD only)