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EB2017: Highlighting ASPET members from Sunday’s poster session

April 25, 2017
By Tamara Escajadillo

Sunday’s ASPET poster session was a great hit, with most of the poster presenters regularly engaged in constructive discussions with other attendees visiting their poster. Many laboratories both domestic and from abroad were very well represented, making it difficult to hone in on just one to talk about. Here we discuss a brief overview of two graduate students, Aleena Arakaki and Cara Rada, from the lab of Dr. JoAnn Trejo at the University of California San Diego. Both were also selected among a long list of worthy candidates to receive one of the ASPET travel awards for EB 2017. Both graduate students study the protease-activated receptor-1 or PAR1, a G protein-coupled receptor, but that is where their research similarities end. Aleena’s research is on the role of ARRDC3 in the regulation of PAR1 trafficking and signaling in invasive breast carcinoma. PAR1 activation correlates with poor patient prognosis, yet the mechanism by which it promotes breast cancer invasion is unknown. Through a series of elegant studies, she demonstrated that the arresting domain containing protein ARRDC3 is a possible critical regulator of PAR1 in invasive breast cancer, and future work will focus on the relationship with the Hippo-pathway. Cara’s studies involve the role of PAR1 in endothelial barrier disruption and cytokine production upon activation by the coagulant protease thrombin. She went on to show that thrombin stimulated PAR-1 activates p38 MAPK which signals through MK2, and mediates phosphorylation of HSP27. Future work will focus on the mechanism of this signaling pathway in the regulation of endothelial pro-inflammatory responses.

These were just a few examples of the great work that can be found at the ASPET poster sessions, and a great thanks to Aleena and Cara for taking time to give us an insight into their work.

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Last Updated: September 6, 2017

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