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Research Project:

Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms as Predictive Diagnostic Biomarkers in Oral Cancer

Funding Approval from Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi (Rs.55 lakhs)

The project Principal investigator, Dr. Dhananjaya Saranath and her Ph.D students are investigating single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in genes associated with critical pathways leading to development of Oral Cancer. In India, oral cancer is the most common cancer in males, ranked as the fourth most common cancer in females, and contributes 26% of the global oral cancer burden. The major risk factors in oral cancer are the highly prevalent chewing/smoking tobacco habits, besides alcohol and high risk Human Papilloma Virus type 16/18. Recently, the Dr.Saranath and team demonstrated that the genomic constitution of an individual contributes to high risk for oral cancer (R Bhatnagar, J Dabholkar, D Saranath, Oral Oncology, 2012, 48: 831-835; Doi:10.1016/ j. oraloncology.2012.03.007; S Chakrabarti, S Multani, J Dabholkar, D Saranath, Medical Oncol 32:60-71. Doi: 10.1007/s12032-015-0483-4)

Our current research focus is to develop "Predictive Biomarkers” indicating increased susceptibility to oral cancer using state of the art molecular tools

The mechanistic pathways of oral carcinogenesis under investigation by four PhD students include:

  • Cellular Metabolism and Protein Regulation
  • Cellular Proliferation and Differentiation
  • Signal Transduction
  • Cellular Transcription


The current data in the ongoing project on 600 oral cancer patients and 600 controls have identified a panel of SNPs indicating risk/protection to oral cancer.

Our collaborators on the project are:

Dr. Sultan Pradhan (Prince Aly Khan Hospital, Mazagaon, Mumbai)
Dr. Nagraj Huilgol (Dr. Balabhai Nanavati Hospital, Vile Parle, Mumbai)
Dr. Ashok Mehta (BSES MG Hospital, Andheri, Mumbai)
Cancer Patients Aid Association (NGO), (Worli, Mumbai)

Cancer Biology: Influence of Genomic constitution



Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms of Genes in Cell Metabolism

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