Date added: 20/06/2017 Australia Japan Foundation Initiative - University of Melbourne


Australia Japan Foundation Initiative - University of Melbourne

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Dr Rod Luwor from the University of Melbourne was a recipient of 2 vials of JCRB cell lines funded under the Australia Japan foundation initiative. He has described the project to which these cell lines will contribute below

"Our lab has a strong research interest in understanding and overcoming tumour resistance to current standard and targeted therapies. Targeting the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR) with FDA-approved agents such as cetuximab, panitumumab, gefitinib and erlotinib has become a standard clinical treatment for several cancer types including metastatic colorectal cancer, head and neck carcinoma and Non-small cell lung carcinoma. However, clinical use of these agents continues to yield unsatisfactory outcomes. Clinically, these anti-EGFR inhibitors yield major tumour regression in only 10-30% of advanced unselected cancer patients, with most patients showing no therapeutic benefit. Furthermore, those who initially respond commonly relapse presenting with reoccurrence of tumours that are frequently resistant to the original therapy. In addition, the standard course of treatment of such agents is estimated to cost between US $15,000-80,000/patient for an improved overall survival of only 1-2 months. Therefore, it is both medically and financially critical to determine the true molecular mechanisms of tumour resistance, and how it can be overcome. We have developed a series of sub-cell lines (including several colon, head and neck and lung cancer cell lines) that have acquired resistance to anti-EGFR inhibitors following long-term culture in the continuous presence of these inhibitors. We have identified that these resistant cells lines have elevated STAT3 activity and enhanced growth and migratory capabilities. The acquisition of cell lines that stably express luciferase from the Australia-Japan Foundation Initiative will greatly complement and benefit our current research. Overall the acquisition of these cell lines will allow us to confirm our in vitro findings into an in vivo biological system. We gratefully acknowledge Cell Bank Australia and the Australia-Japan Foundation for these important cell lines."

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"Japan-derived cell-lines for Australia-based preclinical Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) research” is supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-Japan Foundation of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.