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Interferon's Involvement in Viral Infection and Cancer

Irene Munk Pederson

Appointment Period: 2006-2007 / Grant Year: [22]

Irene MunK PedersonViruses represent one of the main factors that cause normal cells to proliferate and to become malignant; up to 15% of all human cancers are associated with virus infections, and several viruses have been recognized as a causal agent of specific types of cancer. One good example is the link between Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) and the development of liver cancer. Approximately 4 million persons in the United States and probably more than 100 million people worldwide are infected with HCV. 70% to 80% of infected persons become chronic carriers, with a significant morbidity and mortality caused by cirrhosis, end-stage liver disease, and liver cancer. Despite the fact that interferons (IFNs) are the treatment of choice for HCV, little is known about how IFNs mediate their antiviral effects. Therefore, I will study the effects of IFN in regards to clearage of HCV infection and tumorigenesis, and believe that our findings are likely to be of significant clinical relevance.

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Miletic AV, Anzelon-Mills AN, Mills DM, Omori SA, Pedersen IM, Shin DM, Ravetch JV, Bolland S, Morse HC 3rd, Rickert RC. Coordinate suppression of B cell lymphoma by PTEN and SHIP phosphatases. J Exp Med. (2010) 207:2407-20. PMID: 20956547; PMCID: PMC2964567.

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