Young E. Whang
School of Medicine
Urologic Oncology Program
Area of interest
My laboratory is interested in characterizing the role of cytoplasmic signaling pathways in regulation of androgen receptor activity and progression of prostate cancer. Our studies have focused on HER-2 receptor tyrosine kinase and we have demonstrated that HER-2 activation stimulates androgen receptor activity and HER-2 inhibition inhibits androgen receptor transcriptional function at the level of recruitment to the androgen responsive enhancers. These findings have led to the design and initiation of the protocol involving lapatinib, a clinical HER-2 inhibitor, in treatment of patients with prostate cancer. More recently, we have demonstrated that activated Cdc42-associated kinase Ack1 promotes progression of prostate cancer via tyrosine phosphorylation of androgen receptor at Tyr-267 and Tyr-363 residues. We are interested in further characterizing the role of tyrosine phosphorylation of androgen receptor in prostate cancer and development of Ack1 targeted therapy for clinical use.
Awards and Honors
We have shown that tyrosine kinases HER-2 and Ack1 regulate androgen receptor activity in prostate cancer cells and mapped phosphorylation sites in androgen receptor.
We have designed and initiated a phase 2 clinical trial of lapatinib, the dual EGFR/HER-2 inhibitor, in patients with hormone refractory prostate cancer.
Honors and Awards
1999-Glaxo Wellcome Junior Faculty Award in Prostate Cancer Research
2000-Department of Defense Prostate Cancer Research Program New Investigator Award
2000-NIH K08 Physician Scientist Award