State University College at Old Westbury

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    Metastatic Cancer: The Migration of Cancerous Cells
    (2016) Nasir, Ramish; Paul, Shilipi
    Migration is a movement from one place to another and it occurs in every aspect of life. Migration is not bound by size. In a biological sense, it can be macroscopic with the seasonal movements of an animal species, or microscopic at the cellular level of an individual organism. Most migrations that occur at the cellular level of an organism are required for health and survival. However, some rare migrations can have adverse and even deadly effects. One example of this type of migration is in cancer. When these migrations occur, the cancer becomes metastatic; the malignant cell migrates from its origin to another location in the body. This occurs due to a process called EMT, or Epithelial Mesenchymal Transition. At the point EMT occurs the immune system process have to come to the Escape stage of immunoediting, where instead of fighting the malignant cells, the immune system supports their growth and transition. If an individual's cancer has reached a metastatic level, it is very hard to fight the cancer. Cancer is the second leading cause of deaths after heart disease. Fortunately, a lot of research has been going into curing cancer with some promising results. Since every cancer is unique and complicated, most treatments are unique to each patient. If a patient has metastatic cancer the theoretical course of treatment would be to use chemo and radiotherapy to kill metastatic cells and reduce the size of the parent tumor. The poster presentation will look into new studies that focus on gene therapy such as down regulating certain oncogenes and upregulating others, as well as therapies that stop the migration of the malignant cells. Such therapies would look at ways to reverse EMT to MET (mesenchymal to epithelial transition). Would targeting CHD5 and/or its family of proteins such as SUV39H1 or SIRT halt the metastatic process?
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    Low Level Lead Exposure Impairs Attentional Set Shifting Task Performance Depending Upon Sex and Developmental Periods of Exposure
    (2016) Masood, Sidrah; Neuwirth, Lorenz S., Dr.
    Lead (Pb) is a well-known neurotoxin, that when exposed in early development causes lifelong cognitive dysfunction. Pb toxicity research focuses more on memory and motor disturbances and less on executive processes. Further, the extent to which the brain is most susceptible to Pb exposure and its relationship with aberrant cognition remain to be elucidated. Here we examined the effects of an environmentally relevant Pb exposure (150 ppm) in Long Evans Hooded rats abilities to learn simple (SD) and complex (CD) discriminations with reversals (Rev) of compound stimuli (i.e. odors and digging materials presented simultaneously) in the Attention Set Shifting Task (ASST). Rats also learned to cognitively shift within a stimulus dimension (i.e. odor-to-odor) as an Intra-Dimensional Shift (ID) or between stimulus dimensions (i.e. odor-to-material) as an Extra-Dimensional Shift (ED). We examined the differences between gender and three treatment groups: 1) Control (Cont - No Pb Exposure), 2) Perinatal Exposure (Peri- from pairing to birth), and 3) Early Postnatal Exposure (EPN - from birth to parturition). EPN male rats weren't able to learn (CD) and failed to complete the ASST. Peri male rats were able to complete the ASST, but had difficulty with (ID+ID-Rev) when compared to Cont rats, and showed increased latencies to respond during training and in the (ED). Interestingly, EPN female rats were able to complete the ASST and had difficulty in both the (ID+ED-Rev) when compared to Cont rats. Peri female rats completed the ASST with difficulty in the (ED-Rev) when compared to Cont rats. Notably, the Peri female rats performed better than Cont rats on the (ID-Rev). EPN and Peri rats exhibited shorter response latencies in training when compared to Cont rats. In the (ID) stage Peri female rats maintained short latencies to respond while EPN rats were delayed when compared to Cont rats. Results show Pb induced ASST specific deficits on rats cognitive task performance as a function of gender and time of developmental Pb exposure. This suggests that Pb may cause different attention/executive-based cognitive impairments based on the developmental period of exposure due to frontal lobe dysfunction.