Office location: Upham 207
Phone: (262) 472-5139
Pete Mesner. 1999. Molecular Cell Biology
Ph.D., 1995, Biology; University of Iowa; Post-doc., ‘95-'99 Oncology Research, Mayo Clinic
Chief Health Professions Advisor, Advisor for Pre-Health Professions Club (PHAT) & UW-W Secular Student Alliance
Courses Taught: Intro. to Cell Biology, Human Anat. & Phys. I, & Immunology
The research in my lab focuses on issues of eukaryotic cell metabolism and cell death, especially in human solid tumor cells. At present my lab is involved in two main lines of investigation:
1) Investigating the potential of novel and/or emerging anti-cancer agents to synergize with existing chemotherapy drugs to stop cell division and induce cell death. These studies are, at present, performed on human tumor cell lines grown in vitro using standard mammalian cell culture conditions. We employ moderate through-put biochemical & cell biological techniques to assess the efficacy of agent combinations and/or dosing schedules.
2) Establishment and characterization of human solid tumor cell sub-lines adapted to in vitro conditions that mimic the conditions actually found in real tumors in vivo. Due mainly to poor blood vessel growth cells inside solid tumors are adapted to survive starvation (e.g. low glucose concentration), waste build up (e.g. elevated lactate), oxygen starvation (e.g. hypoxia), and elevated osmotic pressure. Cell lines adapted to survive and grow under such conditions will provide a much better model for study of tumor cell behavior than those grown in standard culture conditions of high glucose, and O2 concentrations and low levels of metabolic wastes. These studies utilize a variety of biochemical and molecular-cell biological methods.
I love mentoring undergraduate research students who are driven by curiosity and an honest interest in actually doing lab-based work. I am not interested in working with students who lack self-motivation or who simply want to “do some research” so they can check it off their "to do" list before applying for admission to a professional school.
Selected Publications: *denotes undergraduate student coauthor
Sorensen, E.* and Mesner, P.W. (2005). IgH-2 Cells: A reptilian model for apoptotic studies. Comp. Biochem. and Phys. 140 (1), 163-70.
Svingen, P.A. Loegering, D., Rodriguez, J., Meng, X.W., Mesner, P.W., Holbeck, S., Monks, A. Krawjewski, S., Seudiero, D.A., Sausville, E.A., Reed, J.C., Lazebnik, Y.A., and Kaufmann, S.H., (2004). Components of the cell death machine and drug sensitivity of the National Cancer Institute Cell Line Panel. Clin. Cancer Res. 10 (20): 6807-20.
Kottke TJ, Blajeski AL, Meng XW, Svingen PA, Rauchad S, Mesner PW, Boerner SA, Samejima K, Henriquez NV, Chilcote TJ, Lord J, Salmon M, Earnshaw WC, Kaufmann SH., (2002). Lack of correlation beteeen caspase activation and caspase activity assays in paclitaxel-treated MCF-7 breast cancer cells. J. Biol. Chem. 277 (1), 804-15.
Mesner, P.W., et al., (1999) Characterization of caspase processing and activation in HL-60 cell cytosol under cell-free conditions. J. Biol. Chem. 274 (32) 22635-45.
Mesner, P.W., et al., (1995) A timetable of events during programmed cell death induced by trophic factor withdrawal from neuronal PC12 cells. J. Neurosci., 15 (11): 7357-66.