• Identification of distinct phenotypes of locally advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma.

      Teo, Minyuen; Crotty, Grace F; O'Súilleabháin, Criostóir; Ridgway, Paul F; Conlon, Kevin C; Power, Derek G; McDermott, Ray S; Department of Medical Oncology, Adelaide & Meath Hospital incorporating National Children's Hospital, Tallaght, Dublin, Ireland. neuy924@gmail.com (2013-03)
      A significant number of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma present as locally advanced disease. Optimal treatment remains controversial. We sought to analyze the clinical course of locally advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma (LAPC) in order to identify potential distinct clinical phenotypes.
    • Neuroendocrine tumors of the pancreas.

      Davies, Karen; Conlon, Kevin C; Department of Surgery, Trinity College Dublin, The Adelaide and Meath Hospital incorporating the National Children's Hospital, Tallaght, Dublin 24, Ireland. (Current gastroenterology reports, 2009-04)
      Pancreatic endocrine tumors are rare neoplasms accounting for less than 5% of pancreatic malignancies. They are broadly classified into either functioning tumors (insulinomas, gastrinomas, glucagonomas, VIPomas, and somatostatinomas) or nonfunctioning tumors. The diagnosis of these tumors is difficult and requires a careful history and examination combined with laboratory tests and radiologic imaging. Signs and symptoms are usually related to hormone hypersecretion in the case of functioning tumors and to tumor size or metastases with nonfunctioning tumors. Surgical resection remains the treatment of choice even in the face of metastatic disease. Further development of novel diagnostic and treatment modalities offers potential to greatly improve quality of life and prolong disease-free survival for patients with pancreatic endocrine tumors.
    • RNAi knockdown of Hop (Hsp70/Hsp90 organising protein) decreases invasion via MMP-2 down regulation.

      Walsh, Naomi; Larkin, AnneMarie; Swan, Niall; Conlon, Kevin; Dowling, Paul; McDermott, Ray; Clynes, Martin; National Institute for Cellular Biotechnology, Dublin City University, Glasnevin, Dublin 9, Ireland. Naomi.walsh@dcu.ie (Cancer letters, 2011-07-28)
      We previously identified Hop as over expressed in invasive pancreatic cancer cell lines and malignant tissues of pancreatic cancer patients, suggesting an important role for Hop in the biology of invasive pancreatic cancer. Hop is a co-chaperone protein that binds to both Hsp70/Hsp90. We hypothesised that by targeting Hop, signalling pathways modulating invasion and client protein stabilisation involving Hsp90-dependent complexes may be altered. In this study, we show that Hop knockdown by small interfering (si)RNA reduces the invasion of pancreatic cancer cells, resulting in decreased expression of the downstream target gene, matrix metalloproteinases-2 (MMP-2). Hop in conditioned media co-immunoprecipitates with MMP-2, implicating a possible extracellular function for Hop. Knockdown of Hop expression also reduced expression levels of Hsp90 client proteins, HER2, Bcr-Abl, c-MET and v-Src. Furthermore, Hop is strongly expressed in high grade PanINs compared to lower PanIN grades, displaying differential localisation in invasive ductal pancreatic cancer, indicating that the localisation of Hop is an important factor in pancreatic tumours. Our data suggests that the attenuation of Hop expression inactivates key signal transduction proteins which may decrease the invasiveness of pancreatic cancer cells possibly through the modulation of Hsp90 activity. Therefore, targeting Hop in pancreatic cancer may constitute a viable strategy for targeted cancer therapy.
    • Vascular endothelial growth factor and not cyclooxygenase 2 promotes endothelial cell viability in the pancreatic tumor microenvironment.

      Toomey, Desmond P; Manahan, Ellen; McKeown, Ciara; Rogers, Annamarie; McMillan, Helen; Geary, Michael; Conlon, Kevin C; Murphy, Joseph F; Professorial Surgical Unit, University of Dublin, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. (Pancreas, 2010-07)
      Cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), often coexpressed in cancer, are associated with poor prognosis. However, results from pancreatic cancer trials of their inhibitors were disappointing. This study delineated the role of COX-2 and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in angiogenesis and VEGF regulation.