Yana Zavros, PhD
Professor, Cellular & Molecular Medicine
Director, Tissue Acquisition and Cellular/Molecular Analysis Shared ResourceTissue Acquisition Cellular and Molecular Analysis Shared Resource
After earning her B.Sc. with honors from the University of Melbourne (Australia), Yana Zavros completed her Ph.D. in 1998 in the Department of Surgery. She completed her Howard Hughes Medical Institute postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Michigan. In 2007, Zavros joined Pharmacology and Systems Physiology at the University of Cincinnati as an Assistant Professor. There she pioneered organoid-based technologies aiming to generate patient-derived models to study underlying mechanisms driving initiation and progression of gastrointestinal cancers. In 2019, she moved to the University of Arizona as Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine. She is Associate Head of Research and director of the Tissue Acquisition and Cellular/Molecular Analysis Shared Resource.
The Zavros laboratory studies of the mechanisms that drive gastric epithelial regeneration and Helicobacter pylori-induced disease using in vitro and in vivo organoid systems. The laboratory has also developed patient-derived gastric and pancreatic cancer organoids from tumors and biopsies, which are used in personalized drug screens to predict individual therapy response. Organoid/immune cell co-cultures and humanized mouse models are specifically used to identify the mechanisms by which cancer and immune cells foster an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment.
Holokai, L., J. Chakrabarti, J. Lundy, D. Croagh, P. Adhikary, S. S. Richards, C. Woodson, N. Steele, R. Kuester, A. Scott, et al., "Murine- and Human-Derived Autologous Organoid/Immune Cell Co-Cultures as Pre-Clinical Models of Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma.", Cancers (Basel), vol. 12, issue 12, 2020 Dec 17. PMCID: PMC7766822 PMID: 33348809
Chakrabarti, J., M. B. Dua-Awereh, L. Holokai, and Y. Zavros, "Human Gastrointestinal Organoid Models for Studying Microbial Disease and Cancer.", Curr Top Microbiol Immunol, 2020 Sep 06. PMID: 32889597
Steele, N. G., J. Chakrabarti, J. Wang, J. Biesiada, L. Holokai, J. Chang, L. M. Nowacki, J. Hawkins, M. Mahe, N. Sundaram, et al., "An Organoid-Based Preclinical Model of Human Gastric Cancer.", Cell Mol Gastroenterol Hepatol, vol. 7, issue 1, pp. 161-184, 2019. PMCID: PMC6279812 PMID: 30522949
Holokai, L., J. Chakrabarti, T. Broda, J. Chang, J. A. Hawkins, N. Sundaram, L. E. Wroblewski, R. M. Peek, J. Wang, M. Helmrath, et al., "Increased Programmed Death-Ligand 1 is an Early Epithelial Cell Response to Helicobacter pylori Infection.", PLoS Pathog, vol. 15, issue 1, pp. e1007468, 2019 01. PMCID: PMC6380601 PMID: 30703170
Chakrabarti, J., L. Holokai, LJ. Syu, N. G. Steele, J. Chang, J. Wang, S. Ahmed, A. Dlugosz, and Y. Zavros, "Hedgehog signaling induces PD-L1 expression and tumor cell proliferation in gastric cancer.", Oncotarget, vol. 9, issue 100, pp. 37439-37457, 2018 Dec 21. PMCID: PMC6324774 PMID: 30647844