UNT researcher finds zebrafish could be used to study prostate cancer

Pudur Jagadeeswaran
University of North Texas biologist Pudur Jagadeeswaran uses zebrafish to model human genetics and then predict how best to counteract blood clots in human blood vessels.
Wednesday, April 7, 2010

DENTON (UNT), Texas -- Could zebrafish one day replace mice as the preferred model to study prostate cancer?

A researcher at the University of North Texas thinks it is possible.

Pudur Jagadeeswaran, professor of biology, will present his research at the American Association for Cancer Research annual conference April 17-21 in Washington, D.C. The theme of this year's AACR conference is "Conquering Cancer through Discovery Research" and will highlight the best cancer science and medicine from institutions all over the world.

Zebrafish have been useful in recent years for studying human disease. However, no evidence existed that fish have prostate glands, so the model has not been used to test prostate cancer.

Jagadeeswaran will present evidence that fish do carry prostate-like cells, and therefore, have potential as a model for prostate cancer research. Mice are currently used as a model, but they do not closely mimic prostate cancer in humans.

"A model for prostate cancer would not only allow us to test treatments, but it would also help to create a model for early detection, which is the key in treating prostate cancer," Jagadeeswaran said.

Along with a team of UNT undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students, Jagadeeswaran will conduct further tests on zebrafish to determine whether they closely mimic prostate cancer in humans.

Jagadeeswaran became one of the first researchers in the country about 15 years ago to use zebrafish to model human disease to predict how to best counteract blood clots in human blood vessels.

UNT News Service Phone Number: (940) 565-2108

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