Student Information Training Programs Research Centers

Pharmacology & Toxicology

Research and Graduate Training Faculty


Van Den Berg, Carla, Pharm.D.
Associate Professor of Pharm./Tox.
DPI 2.208

Research Interests

Receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) convey pro-tumorigenic responses in breast, colon, lung, and prostate cancer. RTKs including IGF-IR, EGFR, and Met, propagate tumor behavior by increasing cell proliferation, tumor cell movement (motility), tissue invasion, and metastasis. We focus on a group of proteins known as JNK (c-Jun N-terminal Kinases) which are activated by receptor tyrosine kinases in breast cancer models. Three jnk genes are expressed in eukaryotes and their products were initially thought to convey cell death signals. However, our studies have shown that jnk1 and jnk2 gene products have diverse roles. To better understand their various functions, we study jnk1 and jnk2 in mammary gland development, mammary tumorigenesis/metastases, and response to chemotherapy treatment. We have found that in response to activation of RTKs, JNKs play critical roles in tumorigenesis, DNA damage, cell migration, and metastasis. JNKs also affect mammary development by influencing mammary cell differentiation. Using microarray technology we have identified several genes through which JNKs influence cellular response to growth factors. Our current studies are aimed to better characterize how JNKs mediate these phenotypic responses. Ultimately, we hope to evaluate if JNK can be therapeutically targeted to treat breast cancer patients.

More information about Dr. Van Den Berg
> CV
> Grants & Patents
> Publications & Abstracts
> Drug Dynamics Institute
Last Reviewed: June 24, 2013

Division Information

Mailing Address:
Pharmacology & Toxicology
College of Pharmacy
The University of Texas
at Austin
107 W. Dean Keeton
Stop C0875
Austin, TX, USA

Email Address: pharmtox

Phone: 512-471-5158

Parkinson Gene Link May Aid Battle Against Disease

Dr. Som Mukhopad-
hyay led the research team that focused on the gene SLC30A10 and its role as a "door opener" in helping to remove elevated levels of manganese from cells. The study was published in the Oct. 15, 2014 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.

> Read more about Dr. Mukhopadhyay's research.

Erickson Authors New Book

"Drugs, the Brain and Behavior" is co-authored by Dr. Carlton Erickson, the college's associate dean for research and graduate studies, and Dr. John Brick, executive director of Intoxikon International.

> Read more about Dr. Erickson's new book.

Gore receives SEBM award

Andrea Gore is named to the SEBM Distinguished Scientist Award.

> Read more about Dr. Gore's new award.

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