Terrie G. Flatt, DO, MA
Director, Spanish Language Clinic; Associate Professor of Pediatrics, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine; Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Kansas School of MedicineFull Biography
Terrie Flatt, DO, MA, Hematology/Oncology, received a 1-year, $24,000 KUCC Pilot Grant from the University of Kansas Medical Center/University of Kansas Cancer Center.
Dr. Flatt’s project, “The Role of the Perinucleolar Compartment and eEF1A2 in Pediatric and Young Adult Sarcoma,” will study the role of perinucleolar compartments (PNCs), the eEF1A2 gene, and how they are connected to more aggressive sarcomas.
Tumors often contain small structures, called PNCs, that are thought to make tumors more aggressive. The higher the number of PNCs in the tumor the more likely the tumor will. Previous research done by Dr. Flatt found that the more PNCs tumor cells have, the more often the cancer spreads to other parts of the body and comes back after chemotherapy had been completed. Dr. Flatt’s previous research also found that Hispanic children have many more PNCs in their tumors than Caucasians, which may account for why their cancer treatments aren’t as successful. Research has also found that when the eEF1A2 gene was found at high levels in an adult cancer, the tumors contained more PNCs spread to other parts of the body.
“This looks to be a potential future biomarker for Ewing sarcoma for disease progression and early relapse,” said Dr. Flatt.
Dr. Flatt added that while the mission is to improve cancer survival for all children and young adults with these aggressive cancers, the team hopes this may be of particular benefit to Hispanic children who often have many PNCs in their tumors.
Elizabeth Gonzalez Dominguez, MD, PhD, is a co-investigator on the project and has been leading the laboratory part of this study.
“Dr. Gonzalez Dominguez is from Mexico and is a shining example of diversity in research around the Hispanic population. She fully demonstrates the mission of my program,” Dr. Flatt said.