Basic Science Researcher
Robert Debs, MD
Uncovering molecular pathways in the metastatic progression of cancer
Novel research by Dr. Debs showed that PECAM-1 (platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule-1) regulates levels of cancer-promoting proteins, and that an anti-PECAM-1 monoclonal antibody targets advanced metastases of common fatal cancers.
The Debs lab is developing gene delivery technologies for cancer, heart disease, and neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s.
As part of a new CPMCRI collaborative effort, Dr. Debs is helping create a novel paradigm for treating metastatic tumors with combination therapies. Several targets implicated in tumor proliferation or invasion have already been identified at the institute, and studies are underway to assess activation of these targets and their signaling pathways.
Dr. Debs received his M.D. from the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois, and completed a hematology-oncology fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco.
Publications by Robert J. Debs Opens new window in PubMed.
Recent publications include:
- D. De Semir, M. Nosrati, V. Bezrookove, A. Dar, S. Federman, G. Bienvenu, S. Venna, J. Rangel, J. Climent, T. Meyer Tamguney, S. Thummala, S. Tong, S. Leong, C Haqq, P. Billings, J. Miller, R. Sagebiel, R. Debs, and M. Kashani-Sabet. Pleckstrin homology domain-interacting protein (PHIP) as a marker and mediator of melanoma metastasis. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci 2012. USA. 109, 7067-7072.
- McAllister SD, Murase R, Christian RT, Lau D, Zielinski AJ, Allison J, Almanza C, Pakdel A, Lee J, Limbad C, Liu Y, Debs RJ, Moore DH, Desprez PY. Pathways mediating the effects of cannabidiol on the reduction of breast cancer cell proliferation, invasion, and metastasis. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2011;129:37-47.
- Liu Y, Liggitt D, Fong S, Debs RJ. Systemic co-administration of depsipeptide selectively targets transfection enhancement to specific tissues and cell types. Gene Ther. 2006 Dec;13(24):1724-30. Epub 2006 Aug 3.
- Fong S, Debs RJ, Desprez PY. Id genes and proteins as promising targets in cancer therapy.
Trends Mol Med. 2004 Aug;10(8):387-92. Review.
- Nosrati M, Li S, Bagheri S, Ginzinger D, Blackburn EH, Debs RJ, Kashani-Sabet M. Antitumor activity of systemically delivered ribozymes targeting murine telomerase RNA. Clin Cancer Res. 2004 Aug 1;10(15):4983-90.
- Kashani-Sabet M, Shaikh L, Miller JR 3rd, Nosrati M, Ferreira CM, Debs RJ, Sagebiel RW. NF-kappa B in the vascular progression of melanoma. J Clin Oncol. 2004 Feb 15;22(4):617-23.
- Liu Y, Fong S, Debs RJ. Cationic liposome-mediated gene delivery in vivo. Methods Enzymol. 2003;373:536-50. No abstract available.
- Fong S, Mounkes L, Liu Y, Maibaum M, Alonzo E, Desprez PY, Thor AD, Kashani-Sabet M, Debs RJ. Functional identification of distinct sets of antitumor activities mediated by the FKBP gene family. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 Nov 25;100(24):14253-8. Epub 2003 Nov 11.
- Fong S, Itahana Y, Sumida T, Singh J, Coppe JP, Liu Y, Richards PC, Bennington JL, Lee NM, Debs RJ, Desprez PY. Id-1 as a molecular target in therapy for breast cancer cell invasion and metastasis.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 Nov 11;100(23):13543-8. Epub 2003 Oct 24.