The Research Project
Prostate cancer is a complex disease that researchers don’t know everything about. What they do know is that cancer cells have very similar functions to healthy cells, but with malicious intent. Like healthy cells, cancer cells have a life cycle, produce proteins to do certain functions, and have different genes and complexes to complete their tasks.
SCF complexes play an important role in prostate cancer by sending signals that control the growth and spread of cancer. In the SCF complex, a protein called Skp1 plays an important role; it is crucial for cancer progression and signaling. As the “hub” of the SCF complexes, Skp1 exhibits higher expression in prostate cancer cells from Black men.
By experimenting on cell models in the lab, the researchers will first investigate and compare the Skp1 expression in prostate cancer tissue specimens from Black and White patients. Then they will evaluate the therapeutic-resistant and therapeutic-sensitive cell models from Black men. This will help determine the role that Skp1 plays in therapeutic-resistant and metastatic prostate cancer cells and prostate cancer disparities in Black men. Our researchers believe that if we can block Skp1, then we can stop the SCF complex function and hinder the growth and spread of prostate cancer.