Cynthia M. Smas, DSc.
Cynthia M. Smas, DSc. Associate Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Cancer Biology.
Dr. Smas received her D.Sc. in Nutritional Biochemistry from Harvard University in 1994, and completed her postdoctoral training at the Division of Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology, University of California, Berkeley, in 2000 when she joined the University of Toledo at the Assistant Professor rank.
Dr. Smas is interested in identifying the molecular link between obesity and prostate cancer. More specifically, Dr. Smas is studying adipogenesis and the molecular basis of visceral obesity. The laboratory has identified novel gene products with adipose tissue-specific expression and hormonal regulation. Characterization of their function in the pathogenesis of obesity and its co-morbidities is underway. The incidence and the course of progression of various cancers correlate with obesity, and adipocytes are key cell types present in the tumor microenvironment. The laboratory is mainly interested in prostate cancer, which in many cases, progresses to an androgen-resistant state, for which there are few viable treatment options. Elucidation of the molecular steps of this process may identify novel points of therapeutic intervention. Dr. Smas’ team hypothesizes that obesity plays a role in this molecular pathway.
Dr. Smas has authored 29 peer-reviewed articles. Her research has been funded by grants from the NIH.