2007 Ann Schreiber Grant Recipient – Hong Zhang

Hong Zhang, Ph.D.
Fox Chase Cancer Center
Novel Animal Model to Test Drugs Against Ovarian Cancer

Project Summary

The goal of Dr. Zhang’s research is to validate a mouse model of ovarian cancer to be used to screen new drugs to fight ovarian cancer. His model uses state-of-the-art molecular imaging: Ovarian tumors growing inside the animals ‘glow’ when a specific chemical substrate is injected and the intensity of the glow can be measured to monitor the cancer progression in live animals and evaluate the efficacy of various therapeutic regimens. The first drug to be tested is dasatinib, designed by scientist to bind and inhibit SRC, a protein which has abnormal activity in ovarian cancer. High levels of SRC in ovarian cancer makes cells grow in an uncontrolled way. Dr. Zhang hopes dasatinib will be effective in treating ovarian cancer in his unique animal model of the disease. If so, the model could someday be used to design other treatments against ovarian cancer.