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dc.contributor.advisorMoore, D. Blaine, 1972-
dc.contributor.advisorRehemtulla, Alnawaz
dc.contributor.authorHicks, Michael J.
dc.description52 p.en_US
dc.description.abstractUnderstanding the processes that regulate cell death and cell survival is essential for the development of therapeutic strategies for the treatment of cancer. In this regard, targeting and inhibiting the activity of particular enzymes involved in cancer signaling pathways, or pathways that promote cell survival and proliferation, has particular significance. Akt is one specific enzyme kinase that has been shown to be a key mediator of abnormal cell survival and resistance to cancer therapy. When active, Akt is able to send signals to other cellular components and prevent the cell from undergoing otherwise fated self-destruction. Presently, researchers are designing drugs that inhibit this cancer-inducing Akt kinase activity and that, therefore, encourage cell death. A difficulty still remains however—determining Akt activity in vivo after treatment with an Akt inhibitor. To help facilitate this effort, we offer a novel technique to assess the therapeutic utility of inhibitors of this serine/threonine protein kinase. We have designed an Akt reporter that can be detected via non-invasive fluorescence imaging. To date, the reporter has not been shown to respond to Akt activity in vivo, however. It is posited that, due to an overexpression of Akt reporter, the Akt inhibition assay produced cellular fluorescence independent of Akt phosphorylation. A reduced expression of the Akt reporter may lead to phosphorylation-dependent fluorescence. If so, we propose that this reporter will allow accurate observation of Akt activity in cells following the administration of a specific Akt-inhibiting anti-cancer drug and therefore will provide insight into a drug’s therapeutic potential. Future work with this reporter will allow it to be imaged in living mice and with more sensitive imaging modalities such as positron emission tomography (PET) or single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT).en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipRadiation Oncology and Radiology. University of Michigan. Ann Arbor, Michigan.
dc.publisherKalamazoo Collegeen_US
dc.relation.ispartofKalamazoo College Biology Senior Individualized Projects Collection
dc.relation.ispartofseriesSenior Individualized Projects. Biology;
dc.rightsU.S. copyright laws protect this material. Commercial use or distribution of this material is not permitted without prior written permission of the copyright holder.
dc.titleMolecular Imaging of Akt Kinase Activity In Vivoen_US
KCollege.Access.ContactIf you are not a current Kalamazoo College student, faculty, or staff member, email to request access to this thesis.

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  • Biology Senior Individualized Projects [1520]
    This collection includes Senior Individualized Projects (SIP's) completed in the Biology Department. Abstracts are generally available to the public, but PDF files are available only to current Kalamazoo College students, faculty, and staff.

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