Cancer Metabolism Symposium banner - images of cells


Cancer Metabolism Symposium

July 18, 2023  |  8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.  |  University of Kentucky Gatton Student Center

This annual symposium provides a forum for scientists to share insight into the role metabolism plays in the development, progression, and treatment of cancer. The event features national experts that share will their most recent research, as well as networking opportunities through poster sessions and informal discussions aimed at promoting collaboration between researchers. The goal of the symposium is to stimulate collaborations that lead to the development of groundbreaking research and further our understanding of how metabolism regulates cancer development and progression, and how metabolism can be targeted to develop novel therapies to treat the disease.


8:30 a.m.    Registration & Continental Breakfast

9:00 a.m.    Introduction and Welcome
                           Mark Evers, MD, Director, University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center

9:05 a.m.    Session 1:  COBRE at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine

                     Interrogating cancer metabolism in-patient and patient-derived models
                           Teresa Fan, PhD, Professor, University of Kentucky

9:50 a.m.    Lipid synthesis as a potential therapeutic target in colorectal cancer
                           Yekaterina Zaytseva, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Kentucky

10:35 a.m.  Refreshment Break  |  Poster Session

11:00 a.m.  Session 2:  COBRE at the University of Arkansas

                      Label-free optical imaging of skin wound metabolism
                           Kyle Quinn, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Arkansas

11:45 a.m.  Optical spectroscopy and imaging approaches to evaluating long-term outcome in tumors
                           Narasimhan Rajaram, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Arkansas

12:30 p.m.  Lunch  |  Poster Session

2:00 p.m.    Session 3:  COBRE at the University of Louisville School of Medicine

                     Metabolic reprogramming in pro-metastatic macrophages to control tumor metastasis
                           Jun Yan, MD, PhD, University of Louisville

2:45 p.m.   Targeting Adenosine Metabolic Pathway to Reverse Immunotherapeutic Resistance in Cancer
                           Kavitha Yaddanapudi, PhD, University of Louisville

3:30 p.m.   Tea Break  |  Poster Session

4:00 p.m.   Session 4:  COBRE at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

                       Ethnicity-specific differences in ovarian cancer metabolic signatures: implications for precision cancer
                          Danny N. Dhanasekaran, PhD, University of Oklahoma

4:45 p.m.   DCLK1 drives chemoresistance and alters metabolic pathways in ovarian cancer
                          Bethany Hannafon, PhD, University of Oklahoma

5:35 p.m.   Winner of Poster Award Announcement 

5:45 p.m.   Conclusion Remarks
                          Daret St. Clair, PhD, University of Kentucky

Download the full agenda and program

COBRE Programs and Speakers

Investigators from four COBRE programs will jointly participate in this coming annual Cancer Metabolism Symposium on July 18, 2023, including programs from University of Kentucky (UK), University of Arkansas (UA), University of Louisville (UofL) and University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (OUHSC). 

The UK COBRE on Cancer and Metabolism (CCM) was established in March 2017 by a multidisciplinary team of basic and clinical scientists engaged in cutting-edge research to better define the metabolic dysregulations governing tumor development, metastasis, drug resistance and recurrence. UK-CCM, directed by Drs. St Clair and Peter Zhou, has made significant progress by recruiting and mentoring a cadre of junior investigators to conduct cancer and metabolism thematic research via utilizing cutting-edge technologies and services. Drs. Teresa Fan and Yekaterina Zaytseva will present their most recent discoveries on cancer metabolism and the therapeutic applications for targeting lipid metabolism in colon cancer.

The COBRE program for the Arkansas Integrative Metabolic Research Center (AIMRC) at UA is directed by Dr. Kyle Quinn, an established leader in the field of metabolic imaging and biomedical optics. The scientific theme of the AIMRC is to understand the role of cell and tissue metabolism in disease, development, and repair through research involving advanced imaging, bioenergetics, and data science. By elucidating the complex relationship between metabolism and different disease states using established bioenergetics assays, advanced label-free imaging technology and cutting-edge data science approaches, AIMRC aims to identify novel therapeutic targets and mechanistic insights that can be explored for new therapeutic approaches for a variety of diseases. Drs. Kyle Quinn and Narasimhan Rajaram will present their studies in this meeting.

The mission of COBRE for Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy (CCII) at UofL, directed by Dr. Jun Yan, is to conduct outstanding biomedical research that works towards harnessing the power of the immune system to eradicate cancer. Despite multiple new immunotherapeutic approaches have recently been developed that can induce durable remissions in patients with advanced cancers, the majority of patients still succumb to their cancers. At CCII, scientists are developing new approaches to activate/reinvigorate anticancer immunity and conducting clinical trials of immunotherapeutic agents for cancer patients. Drs. Jun Yan and Kavitha Yaddanapudi will report their recent findings on the metabolic rewiring of infiltrated immune cells in tumors. 

The overarching goal of COBRE for Translation Cancer Research at OUHSC, directed by Dr. Danny N. Dhanasekaran, is to foster and enhance multidisciplinary collaborative research to facilitate translational cancer research. By better understanding the mechanisms that underpin the treatment resistance, researchers at this program are developing new strategies to circumvent resistance for precision medicine to each patient and their cancer. Drs. Danny N. Dhanasekaran and Bethany Hannafon will update their new discoveries on metabolic reprogramming in ovarian cancer development and therapeutic resistance.

Event Contact

For more information or assistance, please contact Sandra Shepherd, Event Coordinator for Education and Research at the UK Markey Cancer Center.

Cancer Metabolism Symposium Event Program

The Cancer Metabolism Symposium is open to scientists in the field to share insights into the role metabolism plays in the development, progression and treatment of cancer. To download a copy of the event program, click the button below.

Download the Event Program


COBRE Group meetings are held on the first Friday of each month from 1:15 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. in COMBS 102. All meetings are currently being conducted via Zoom.
For Zoom meeting details, please contact Nathan Vanderford.