Exploring Drug Resistance in Gastrointestinal Cancer Using a Network Model


  • SREENIDHI SANKARARAMAN Aspiring Scientists' Summer Internship Program Intern
  • Saleet Jafri Aspiring Scientists' Summer Internship Program Mentor




Gastrointestinal cancer is a major cancer that affects the digestive organs including but not limited to the stomach, intestines, pancreas, colon, and liver. It is a slow spreading cancer that develops over a year but is highly prevalent globally. Gastrointestinal cancers, and cancers as a whole, can be attributed to common gene variants seen in each respective type of cancer. In this study specifically, after an extensive analysis into cancer variant databases, gene variants such as the PTEN, PRSS1, and MUTYH genes were linked to gastrointestinal cancer. Into further analysis of potential drug blockers of such cancer genetic variants, drugs, specifically Everolimus, Quinazolinone, and Nivolumab were identified as being able to have a restrictive effect on such cancer-inducing genetic variants. These drugs are hypothesized to block the receptors for these respective gastrointestinal cancer gene variants. After such cancer gene variants and restrictive drugs were identified, a signaling diagram was developed to see the pathways and inhibition factors behind all the genes involved in gastrointestinal cancer. From this boolean model, Fortran analysis was used to build a boolean model to identify the roles of existing drugs on the gene variants involved in gastrointestinal cancer and the potential roles of future drugs on gastrointestinal cancer variants. Future studies include clinical testing to identify the validity of the hypothesized roles of drugs against cancer variants.





College of Science: School of Systems Biology