Urology Research Department


Venkatesh Kolluru, PhD receives Novus Biologicals Travel Grant

January 4, 2019 - Congratulations to Venkatesh Kolluru, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Urology Research Department. NOVUS Biologicals has awarded Dr. Kolluru with the December, 2018 Novus Biologicals Travel Grant in the amount of $500. 

Balaji Chandrasekaran, PhD Balaji Chandrasekaran, PhD receives award to 10th Conference on Metal Toxicity and Carcinogenesis.

October 9, 2018 - Congratulations to Balaji Chandrasekaran, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Urology Research Department in receiving a travel award to attend the 10th Conference on Metal Toxicity and Carcinogenesis where he will be presented with a certificate at the conference awards banquet on Tuesday, October 30th in Albuquerque, New Mexico. 


Venkatesh Kolluru, PhD

Venkatesh Kolluru, PhD receives AACR-Bristol Myers Squibb Oncology Scholar-in-Training award.

March 14, 2018 - Congratulations to Venkatesh Kolluru, PhD, Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Urology Research Department! The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) has awarded Dr. Kolluru based on the quality of your award application and abstract entitled “Cadmium-induced endoplasmic reticulum stress causes defective autophagy in human prostate carcinogenesis”. Dr. Kolluru has been selected to receive an AACR-Bristol Myers Squibb Oncology Scholar-in-Training Award. Scholar-in-Training Awards are highly competitive and are presented to those with high-quality abstracts and applications from a large candidate pool. Funds have been graciously donated to the AACR to recognize outstanding young investigators for their meritorious work in cancer and to support their attendance to the 2018 AACR Annual Meeting, taking place April 14-18, 2018 in Chicago, IL, USA.

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.




 (Pictured from left: Venkatesh Kolluru, PhD, Chendil Damodaran, PhD, Director of Urology Research, Ashish Tyagi, PhD, Balaji Chandrasekaran, PhD, and Nisha Rani, PhD, front center)

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 UrologyChendil 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 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!