"Dysregulation of Autophagy and Malignant Behavior in Ovarian Cancer"
Ciro Isidoro, MD, PhD
Professor of Cell and Molecular Pathology
School of Sciences and School of Biotechnology
Adjunct Professor of Environmental Medicine
School of Medicine
Università del Piemonte Orientale "A. Avogadro"
Autophagy is a cellular process of lysosomal degradation of aged, redundant or abnormal self molecules or organelles. In normal cells, autophagy runs at low basal level to allow macromolecules turnover, and it prevents cell transformation through the constant elimination of pro-oxidant molecules. Autophagy has been implicated in various malignant aspects of cancer, including the resistance of cancer cells to depletion of nutrients, as it occurs in fast growing and insufficiently vascularized tumours, and to chemotherapeutics. Autophagy has also been implicated in cell migration and tumour invasion. Autophagy is regulated by a certain group of oncogenes and tumour suppressor genes and by several microRNAs. Here I present our experimental data supporting the involvement of Autophagy in cell migration and resistance to chemotherapeutic in ovarian cancer, and the role of genetic and epigenetic factors in (dys)-regulation of Autophagy.