Bio

Clinical Focus


  • Cancer > Head and Neck Cancer
  • Head and Neck Surgical Oncology
  • Microvascular Reconstruction
  • Otolaryngology
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms
  • Head and Neck Cancer

Academic Appointments


Professional Education


  • Residency:University of Michigan Hospital (2009) MI
  • Board Certification: Otolaryngology, American Board of Otolaryngology (2010)
  • Fellowship, Harvard Medical School / Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary, Head & Neck Surgical Oncology, Microvascular Reconstruction, Skull Base Surgery (2010)
  • Residency, University of Michigan, Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery (2009)
  • M.D., University of Michigan, Medical School (2004)
  • B.A., University of Michigan, Economics (1998)
  • Fellowship:Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (2010) MA
  • Internship:University of Michigan Hospital (2005) MI
  • Medical Education:University of Michigan (2004) MI

Publications

All Publications


  • CD271 is a functional and targetable marker of tumor-initiating cells in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Oncotarget Murillo-Sauca, O., Chung, M. K., Shin, J. H., Karamboulas, C., Kwok, S., Jung, Y. H., Oakley, R., Tysome, J. R., Farnebo, L. O., Kaplan, M. J., Sirjani, D., Divi, V., Holsinger, F. C., Tomeh, C., Nichols, A., Le, Q. T., Colevas, A. D., Kong, C. S., Uppaluri, R., Lewis, J. S., Ailles, L. E., Sunwoo, J. B. 2014; 5 (16): 6854-6866

    Abstract

    Tumor-initiating cells (TICs) in squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN) are best characterized by their surface expression of CD44. Although there is great interest in identifying strategies to target this population, no marker of these cells has been found to be functionally active. Here, we examined the expression of the purported marker of normal human oral epithelial stem cells, CD271. We show that CD271 expression is restricted to a subset of the CD44+ cells. Using xenograft assays, we show that the CD44+CD271+ subpopulation contains the most tumorigenic cells. Loss of CD271 function results in a block in the G2-M phase of the cell cycle and a profound negative impact on the capacity of these cells to initiate tumor formation in vivo. Incubation with recombinant NGF results in enhanced phosphorylation of Erk, providing additional evidence that CD271 is functionally active. Finally, incubation of SCCHN cells with antibody to CD271 results in decreased Erk phosphorylation and decreased tumor formation in vivo. Thus, our data are the first to demonstrate that CD271 more specifically identifies the TIC subpopulation within the CD44+ compartment in SCCHN and that this receptor is a functionally active and targetable molecule.

    View details for PubMedID 25149537

  • Characterization of tumorigenic cell lines from the recurrence and lymph node metastasis of a human salivary mucoepidermoid carcinoma ORAL ONCOLOGY Warner, K. A., Adams, A., Bernardi, L., Nor, C., Finkel, K. A., Zhang, Z., McLean, S. A., Helman, J., Wolf, G. T., Divi, V., Queimado, L., Kaye, F. J., Castilho, R. M., Noer, J. E. 2013; 49 (11): 1059-1066

    Abstract

    The long-term outcome of patients with mucoepidermoid carcinoma is poor. Limited availability of cell lines and lack of xenograft models is considered a major barrier to improved mechanistic understanding of this disease and development of effective therapies.To generate and characterize human mucoepidermoid carcinoma cell lines and xenograft models suitable for mechanistic and translational studies.Five human mucoepidermoid carcinoma specimens were available for generation of cell lines. Cell line tumorigenic potential was assessed by transplantation and serial in vivo passaging in immunodeficient mice, and cell line authenticity verified by short tandem repeat (STR) profiling.A unique pair of mucoepidermoid carcinoma cell lines was established from a local recurrence (UM-HMC-3A) and from the metastatic lymph node (UM-HMC-3B) of the same patient, 4years after surgical removal of the primary tumor. These cell lines retained epithelial-like morphology through 100 passages in vitro, contain the Crtc1-Maml2 fusion oncogene (characteristic of mucoepidermoid carcinomas), and express the prototypic target of this fusion (NR4A2). Both cell lines generated xenograft tumors when transplanted into immunodeficient mice. Notably, the xenografts exhibited histological features and Periodic Acid Schiff (PAS) staining patterns that closely resembled those found in human tumors. STR profiling confirmed the origin and authenticity of these cell lines.These data demonstrate the generation and characterization of a pair of tumorigenic salivary mucoepidermoid carcinoma cell lines representative of recurrence and lymph node metastasis. Such models are useful for mechanistic and translational studies that might contribute to the discovery of new therapies for mucoepidermoid carcinoma.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.oraloncology.2013.08.004

    View details for Web of Science ID 000325461200004

    View details for PubMedID 24035723

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