Department of Molecular Medicine

[ default picture ] Nameer  KirmaPh.D.

Associate Professor/Research

Profile and Contact Information | Research



Research Program

I am a molecular biologist by training and did my postdoctoral fellowship in breast cancer and gynecologic malignancy. I have examined the role of estrogen signaling and its crosstalk with EGFR-Her2/neu signaling pathway. I have also worked on cell signaling in gynecologic cancers, including the transforming growth factor beta and macrophage-colony stimulating factor pathways. I have also expanded my work into invasive inflammatory gynecologic diseases such as endometriosis, which shares many similar molecular characteristics with gynecologic cancers. My current research involves understanding long term effects by estrogen disruptors on the risk of breast cancer and understanding the interplay between cell signaling and epigenetic programming in gynecologic disease.


Selected Publications

  1. Gonzales CB, Kirma NB, De La Chapa JJ, Chen R, Henry MA, Luo S,. Hargreaves KN. Vanilloids induce oral cancer apoptosis Independent of TRPV1. 2014 Oral Oncology In Press.
  2. Hsu YT, Gu F, Huang YW, Liu J, Ruan J, Huang RL, Wang CM, Chen CL, Jadhav RR, Lai HC, Mutch DG, Goodfellow PJ, Thompson IM, Kirma NB, Huang TH. Promoter Hypomethylation of EpCAM-Regulated Bone Morphogenetic Protein Gene Family in Recurrent Endometrial Cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 2013 Nov 15;19(22):6272-85..
  3. Hsu PY, Hsu HK, Lan X, Juan L, Yan PS, Labanowska J, Heerema N, Hsiao TH, Chiu YC, Chen Y, Liu Y, Li L, Li R, Thompson IM, Nephew KP, Sharp ZD, Kirma NB, Jin VX, Huang TH. Amplification of distant estrogen response elements deregulates target genes associated with tamoxifen resistance in breast cancer. Cancer Cell. 2013 Aug 12;24(2):197-212.
  4. Huang RL, Gu F, Kirma NB, Ruan J, Chen CL, Wang HC, Liao YP, Chang CC, Yu MH, Pilrose JM, Thompson IM, Huang HC, Huang TH, Lai HC, Nephew KP. Comprehensive methylome analysis of ovarian tumors reveals hedgehog signaling pathway regulators as prognostic DNA methylation biomarkers. Epigenetics. 2013 Jun;8(6):624-34.
  5. Huang TT, Gonzales CB, Gu F, Hsu YT, Jadhav RR, Wang CM, Redding SW, Tseng CE, Lee CC, Thompson IM, Chen HR, Huang TH, and Kirma NB: (2013) Epigenetic deregulation of the anaplastic lymphoma kinase gene modulates mesenchymal characteristics of oral squamous cell carcinomas. Carcinogenesis. 34(8): 1717-27.
  6. Kirma NB and Tekmal RR: (2012) Transgenic mouse models of hormonal mammary carcinogenesis: Advantages and limitations. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 131(3-5): 76-82.
  7. De La Garza EM, Binkley PA, Ganapathy M, Krishnegowda NK, Tekmal RR, Schenken RS, and Kirma NB: (2012) Raf-1, a potential therapeutic target, mediates early steps in endometriosis lesion development by endometrial epithelial and stromal cells. Endocrinology 153(8): 3911-21.
  8. Nair HB, Huffman S, Veerapaneni P, Kirma NB, Binkley P, Perla RP, Evans DB, and Tekmal RR: (2011) Hyaluronic acid-bound letrozole nanoparticles restore sensitivity to letrozole-resistant xenograft tumors in mice. J Nanosci Nanotechnol. 11(5): 3789-99.
  9. Veerapaneni P, Kirma N, Nair HB, Hammes LS, Hall KL, and Tekmal RR: (2009) Elevated aromatase expression correlates with cervical carcinoma progression. Gynecol Oncol. 114(3): 496-500.
  10. Liu YG, Tekmal, RR, Binkley PA, Nair HB, Schenken RS, and Kirma NB: (2009) Induction of endometrial epithelial cell invasion and c-fms expression by transforming growth factor beta. Mol Hum Reprod. 15(10): 665-73.
  11. Tekmal RR, Nair HB, Perla RP, and Kirma N: (2007) HER-2/neu x aromatase double transgenic mice model: the effects of aromatase overexpression on mammary tumorigenesis. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 106(1-5): 111-8.
  12. Kirma N, Hammes LS, Liu YG, Nair HB, Valente PT, Kumar S, Flowers LC, and Tekmal RR: (2007) Elevated expression of the oncogene c-fms and its ligand, the macrophage colony-stimulating factor-1, in cervical cancer and the role of transforming growth factor-beta1 in inducing c-fms expression. Cancer Res. 67(5): 1918-26.
  13. Hammes LS, Tekmal RR, Naud P, Edelweiss MI, Kirma N, Valente PT, Syrjänen KJ, Cunha-Filho JS: (2007) Macrophages, inflammation and risk of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) progression — clinicopathological correlation. Gynecol Oncol. 105(1): 157-65.
  14. Sidell N, Kirma N, Morgan ET, Nair H, and Tekmal RR: (2007) Inhibition of estrogen-induced mammary tumor formation in MMTV-aromatase transgenic mice by 4-chlorophenylacetate. Cancer Lett. 251(2): 302-10.
  15. Nair HB, Luthra R, Kirma N, Liu YG, Flowers L, Evans D, and Tekmal RR: (2005) Induction of aromatase expression in cervical carcinomas: effects of endogenous estrogen on cervical cancer cell proliferation. Cancer Res. 65(23): 11164-73.
  16. Kirma N,Luthra R, Jones J, Liu YG, Nair HB, Mandava U, and Tekmal RR: (2004) Overexpression of the colony-stimulating factor (CSF-1) and/or its receptor c-fms in mammary glands of transgenic mice results in hyperplasia and tumor formation. Cancer Res. 64(12): 4162-70.
  17. Luthra R, Kirma N, Jones J,and Tekmal RR: (2003) Use of letrozole as a chemopreventive agent in aromatase overexpressing transgenic mice. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 86(3-5): 461-7.
  18. Gill K, Kirma N, Gunna VS, Santanam N, Parthasarathy S, and Tekmal RR: (2001) Regulation of colony stimulating factor-1 (CSF-1) in endometrial cells: glucocorticoids and oxidative stress regulate the expression of CSF-1 and its receptor c-fms in endometrial cells. Fertil Steril. 76(5): 1005-11.
  19. Mandava U, Kirma N, and Tekmal RR: (2001) Aromatase overexpression transgenic mice model: cell type specific expression and use of letrozole to abrogate mammary hyperplasia without affecting normal physiology. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 79(1-5): 27-34.
  20. Mandava U, Kirma N, and Tekmal RR: (2001) Aromatase overexpression transgenic mice model: cell type specific expression and use of letrozole to abrogate mammary hyperplasia without affecting normal physiology. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 79(1-5): 27-34.
  21. Kirma N, Mandava U, Wuichet K, and Tekmal RR: (2001) The effects of aromatase overexpression on mammary growth and gene expression in the aromatase x transforming growth factor alpha double transgenic mice. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 78(5): 419-26.
  22. Kirma N, Gill K, Mandava U, and Tekmal RR: (2001) Overexpression of aromatase leads to hyperplasia and changes in the expression of genes involved in apoptosis, cell cycle, growth, and tumor suppressor functions in the mammary glands of transgenic mice. Cancer Res. 61(5): 1910-8.