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Kenny ChitcholtanResearch Fellow

BSc(N Territory), PhD(Cant)

Tel +64 21 0253 5924
Email kenny.chitcholtan@otago.ac.nz

Research Interests

My research interests are focusing on the activity of tyrosine kinases, targeted inhibitors, effects of ascitic fluid ,and anti-tumour properties of natural food compounds in the progression of advanced ovarian cancer.

To understand these factors, I am using three dimensional (3D) cell cultures, chicken embryos and a syngeneic mouse model to investigate the biological activity in ovarian cancer.

Tyrosine kinases and targeted blockers in ascitic ovarian cancer cells

Receptor tyrosine kinases including EGFR, HER-2 and c-Met and non receptor tyrosine kinase including Jaks are selectively expressed in primary tissue and metastatic tumour of advanced ovarian cancer cells.

Their over expression is positively correlated with a poor prognosis in the advanced disease. Despite wealth information of these tyrosine kinase expressions and activation, little is known about the biological activity of tyrosine kinases in ovarian cancer cells are present in ascitic fluid.

This project is investigating the expression and activation of tyrosine kinases in ovarian cancer cells isolated from ascitic fluid. The proteomic profiles of each tyrosine kinases are explored in order to identify drugable targeted blockers.

Effects of ascitic fluid on ovarian cancer cells

Women with advanced disease often have with the accumulation of ascites in the abdominal cavity.

The ascitic fluid contains a mixture of cytokines, growth factors, chemokines and bioactive lipid molecules.

In addition, the ascitic fluid contains various of cell types including white blood cells, mesenchymal cells, red blood cells and ovarian cancer cells (single cells and clusters).

In recent years, a few studies have started to investigate the biological activity of ascitic fluid,which is believed to influence behavior of ovarian cancer cells.

Even though the exact insight mechanisms of how ascitic fluid exert to ovarian cancer cells is poorly defined, my research suggests that ascitic fluid can increase expression of oncogenic proteins in ovarian cancer cells and reduce the cellular uptake of targeted drugs.

Anti-tumour properties of naturally occurring compounds

Naturally occurring compounds have been an integral part of modern cancer research for many years.

These compounds are cheap and easily accessible for general public. 

Toxicity profile of natural compounds are favourable. Therefore, anti-tumour properties of natural compounds are intensively investigated.  

I am interested in the biological activity of resveratrol and its derivatives. Resveratrol shows anti-tumour activities in an in vitro in various tumour types including ovarian cancer.

However, there is big cap of knowledge whether resveratrol is really active in an in vivo model and human.

Furthermore, due to the rapid metabolism of resveratrol in vivo and human, the derivatives of resveratrol could provide a better natural compound that could have potential anti-tumour in vivo condition.

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Publications

Hassan, W., Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P., & Garrill, A. (2018). Ascitic fluid from advanced ovarian cancer patients compromises the activity of receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors in 3D cell clusters of ovarian cancer cells. Cancer Letters, 420, 168-181. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2018.02.013

Hassan, W., Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P., & Garrill, A. (2016). A combination of two receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors, canertinib and PHA665752 comprises ovarian cancer cell growth in 3D cell models. Oncology & Therapy, 4(2), 257-274. doi: 10.1007/s40487-016-0031-1

Tino, A. B., Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P. H., & Garrill, A. (2016). Resveratrol and acetyl-resveratrol modulate activity of VEGF and IL-8 in ovarian cancer cell aggregates via attenuation of the NF-κB protein. Journal of Ovarian Research, 9, 84. doi: 10.1186/s13048-016-0293-0

Hogg, S. J., Evans, J. J., Sykes, P. H., & Chitcholtan, K. (2015). A method to investigate the anti-metabolic activity of anti-cancer agents on ovarian cancer cells cultured in a 96-well high throughput format. Journal of Ovarian Research, 8, 43. doi: 10.1186/s13048-015-0172-0

Hogg, S. J., Chitcholtan, K., Hassan, W., Sykes, P. H., & Garrill, A. (2015). Resveratrol, acetyl-resveratrol, and polydatin exhibit antigrowth activity against 3D cell aggregates of the SKOV-3 and OVCAR-8 ovarian cancer cell lines. Obstetrics & Gynecology International, 2015, 279591. doi: 10.1155/2015/279591

Journal - Research Article

Hassan, W., Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P., & Garrill, A. (2018). Ascitic fluid from advanced ovarian cancer patients compromises the activity of receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors in 3D cell clusters of ovarian cancer cells. Cancer Letters, 420, 168-181. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2018.02.013

Hassan, W., Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P., & Garrill, A. (2016). A combination of two receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors, canertinib and PHA665752 comprises ovarian cancer cell growth in 3D cell models. Oncology & Therapy, 4(2), 257-274. doi: 10.1007/s40487-016-0031-1

Tino, A. B., Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P. H., & Garrill, A. (2016). Resveratrol and acetyl-resveratrol modulate activity of VEGF and IL-8 in ovarian cancer cell aggregates via attenuation of the NF-κB protein. Journal of Ovarian Research, 9, 84. doi: 10.1186/s13048-016-0293-0

Hogg, S. J., Chitcholtan, K., Hassan, W., Sykes, P. H., & Garrill, A. (2015). Resveratrol, acetyl-resveratrol, and polydatin exhibit antigrowth activity against 3D cell aggregates of the SKOV-3 and OVCAR-8 ovarian cancer cell lines. Obstetrics & Gynecology International, 2015, 279591. doi: 10.1155/2015/279591

Hogg, S. J., Evans, J. J., Sykes, P. H., & Chitcholtan, K. (2015). A method to investigate the anti-metabolic activity of anti-cancer agents on ovarian cancer cells cultured in a 96-well high throughput format. Journal of Ovarian Research, 8, 43. doi: 10.1186/s13048-015-0172-0

Chitcholtan, K., Asselin, E., Parent, S., Sykes, P. H., & Evans, J. J. (2013). Differences in growth properties of endometrial cancer in three dimensional (3D) culture and 2D cell monolayer. Experimental Cell Research, 319(1), 75-87. doi: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2012.09.012

Chitcholtan, K., Sykes, P. H., & Evans, J. J. (2012). The resistance of intracellular mediators to doxorubicin and cisplatin are distinct in 3D and 2D endometrial cancer. Journal of Translational Medicine, 10(1), 38-53. doi: 10.1186/1479-5876-10-38

More publications...