Funded Research

Targeting Nucleolar Protein Interactions in Pediatric Gliomas
Principal Investigator(s):
  • Jason D. Weber, Ph.D. Medicine
  • McDonnell Pediatric Cancer Center
Award Mechanism:
Interdisciplinary Research Initiative
Project Period:
2/1/2013 - 1/31/2015
Total Amount:
Jeffrey R. Leonard

Gliomas are one of the most common brain tumors in the children. Despite significant research, the survival rate for patients with high-grade gliomas remains very low. It has been show that two proteins in the nucleus of cells — nucleolin (NCL) and nucleophosmin (NPM) — are overexpressed in multiple cancers. NCL is required to maintain the elevated growth and proliferation of tumor cells, and NPM also is required for efficient tumor cell growth.  Exactly how NCL and NPM regulate of glioma growth will be investigated in this project.


1)      Establish the importance of both NPM expression and the NCL-NPM interaction in glioma tumor cell growth, proliferation, and survival

2)      Assess the utility of NCL-NPM complexes as therapeutic targets for high-grade pediatric gliomas using preclinical animal models of high-grade gliomas

Potential impact:  We will identify whether NCL, NPM and their interactions make them potential anti-cancer targets for treating gliomas in children.