Rowan University Professor Receives $140,000 Grant from National Institute of Health for Prostate Cancer Research

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Glassboro ? Dr. Catherine Yang, an associate professor of chemistry at Rowan University, received a $140,000 three-year grant for prostate research from the National Institute of Health (NIH). This i

Four students will assist the professor with her research

Glassboro ? Dr. Catherine Yang, an associate professor of chemistry at Rowan University, received a $140,000 three-year grant for prostate research from the National Institute of Health (NIH). This is the first time a Rowan professor has been awarded a grant from this organization. The NIH awarded only one other grant for prostate research in the state of New Jersey and that was to a medical school.

<+>It is a great honor to receive a grant from such a prestigious funding agency for health-related issues,<+> said Yang, who will begin her research this summer with four of her students.
<+>This grant will enable us to do more detailed research into PSA, the most abundant protein secreted from prostatic tissues in patients with prostate cancer.<+>

Yang?s research will examine the potential involvement of PSA proteolytic activity in primary and advanced prostate cancer. She and her four student assistants ? Matt Abad of Atco, Patricia Jackson of Sewell, Stacey Lavender of Bellmawr and Dai Tran of Pennsauken ? will study whether inhibitors of PSA can be developed and, if so, will they be effective in treating prostate cancer. Yang and her students also seek to determine the nature of PSA hydrolysis of natural protein substrates, the proteins involved, how fast the reactions proceed and the effects of hydrolysis on protein function under physiological conditions.

Over the last decade, prostate cancer has become the most commonly diagnosed cancer in American men. In 2000, more cases of prostate cancer (approximately 200,00) were found in American men than lung cancer (91,400) and colorectal cancer (64,000) combined and the incidence of prostate cancer is roughly equivalent to the incidence of breast cancer in women (178,000). These high annual incidence rates translate into the human reality that one in every six American men will be diagnosed with clinically detectable prostate cancer during his lifetime. In 2000, about 40,000 American men died from prostate cancer, making it the second leading cause of cancer deaths in men in the United States.

A resident of Cherry Hill, Yang earned her Ph.D. and master?s degree from Tufts University. She has also done some postdoctoral work at Harvard Medical School. She has been teaching at Rowan University since 1995.

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