Urology Research Department

Urology Research Department

Ashish Tyagi, PhD

Ashish Tyagi, PhD receives CSCO Young Investigator Travel Award

June 28, 2018 - Congratulations to Ashish Tyagi, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Urology Research Department as he has been selected to receive a CSCO Young Investigator Travel Award.  As a recipient of the prestigious award, Dr. Tyagi will attend the Chinese Society for Clinical Oncology’s (CSCO) 21st Annual Meeting in Xiamen, China, September 19-23, 2018.

The Department of Urology at University of Louisville announced the development of the Urology Research Department in 2014.  Leading the department is Chendil Damodaran, PhD, Associate Professor of Urology.

Chendil Damodaran, PhD earned his doctorate in Cancer Biology from the University of Madras. His current research is funded by the Department of Defense, National Institutes of Health, Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Kentucky Lung Cancer Research Program, and American Cancer Society.

With respect to prostate cancer, Dr. Damodaran's laboratory is involved in identifying compounds that have anti-prostate cancer activity such as psoralidin, which is found in an herbal plant that is extensively used in traditional medicines (for treating gynecological bleeding, vitiligo and psoriasis, and providing hepatoprotective effects, osteoblast proliferation stimulating activity, and anti-bacterial activity). 

As a consequence of his initial findings, Dr. Damodaran has was awarded NIH funding to investigate the underlying anticancer mechanisms responsible for the effect of psoralidin in prostate cancer.  In addition to psoralidin, Dr. Damodaran has reported that Withaferin-A (WA), a major component of the dietary compound Withania sominifera, up-regulates prostate apoptosis response-4 (Par-4) expression, induces apoptosis in androgen refractory prostate cancer cells, and causes regression of PC-3 xenografts in mouse models. His findings suggest that WA is capable of inhibiting the survival of both androgen-responsive and androgen-refractory prostate cancer cells.

Dr. Damodaran's breast cancer research has identified two compounds that inhibit breast cancer cell survival in vitro and in vivo. One such compound derives from an alternative medicine called Semecarpus Lehyam. On-going studies are being conducted to explore the efficacy of this drug in targeting the EGFR/Neu signaling pathway in estrogen-negative breast cancer cells, which are more resistant to conventional therapies.

As an extension of his breast and prostate cancer research efforts, Dr. Damodaran's involved in synthesizing and testing the derivatives of the bioactive parent compounds detailed above; some compounds appear to be more effective than their parent compounds. Dr. Damodaran's pursuit of drugs for cancer therapy from natural products significantly contributes to the identification of new drugs that might possibly cure cancer or prevent its occurrence.

To find out more about our practice and other specialty groups, log on to https://www.uoflphysicians.com/urology and be sure to click our news link to see what's happening at the University of Louisville Department of Urology, University of Louisville Physicians - Urology, and the UofL Urology Residency Program!