Literature Mastery Seminar | Ryan Elshimali, MS Student - Keck Graduate Institute October 7, 2019, 12:00 pm Skip to main content
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Join us as Master of Science in Applied Life Sciences student Ryan Elshimali speaks about utilizing EMP2 to identify breast cancer patients at risk for metastasis and relapse.

“Over the last few years, the use of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) as “liquid biopsies” of solid tumors has gained momentum. However, current methodologies to recover CTCs from women with breast cancer (BC) poorly discriminate between early-stage patients amenable to surgical therapy and advanced-stage patients receiving chemotherapy. Moreover, there are no assays currently approved which can predict patient response. As breast cancer is the second most common cause of cancer deaths in women, exploring novel prognostic and diagnostic markers in BC CTCs is of great significance. To this end, we have recently identified a diagnostic marker, epithelial membrane protein-2 (EMP2). EMP2 is highly expressed in all subtypes of BC, with over 90% of TNBC patients showing expression of the protein. New data suggests that EMP2 increases the tumorigenic potential and resistance of cancer cells, suggesting it may be a marker to track cells commonly referred to as “cancer stem cells”. We seek to show antibodies that recognize EMP2 can capture CTCs to diagnose and stage disease. We further propose to  characterize EMP2 + CTCs as a means for improved personalized medicine.”

Thesis Committee:

  • Thesis Advisor: Madhuri Wadehra, PhD Assistant Professor, David Geffen School of Medicine Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
  • Committee Member: Lynn Gordon, MD, PhD Senior Associate Dean Equity and Diversity Inclusion, UCLA DGSOM

Date: Monday, October 7, 2019 at 12:00 p.m.
Location: Building 121, Classroom 1110

Snacks will be provided. Please feel free to bring your own lunch to eat during the seminar.


October 7, 2019
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm PDT
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KGI Bldg. 121, Room 1110
121 Bucknell Ave.
Claremont, 91711 United States


KGI Master of Science in Applied Life Sciences Program

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