GSBS Student Publications

Student Author(s)

Ma. Reina D. Improgo

GSBS Program


UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Small Cell Lung Carcinoma; Luminescent Measurements; High-Throughput Screening Assays; Synaptic Transmission


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences | Neoplasms | Neuroscience and Neurobiology | Psychiatry


BACKGROUND: Frontline treatment of small cell lung carcinoma (SCLC) relies heavily on chemotherapeutic agents and radiation therapy. Though SCLC patients respond well to initial cycles of chemotherapy, they eventually develop resistance. Identification of novel therapies against SCLC is therefore imperative.

METHODS AND FINDINGS: We have designed a bioluminescence-based cell viability assay for high-throughput screening of anti-SCLC agents. The assay was first validated via standard pharmacological agents and RNA interference using two human SCLC cell lines. We then utilized the assay in a high-throughput screen using the LOPAC(1280) compound library. The screening identified several drugs that target classic cancer signaling pathways as well as neuroendocrine markers in SCLC. In particular, perturbation of dopaminergic and serotonergic signaling inhibits SCLC cell viability.

CONCLUSIONS: The convergence of our pharmacological data with key SCLC pathway components reiterates the importance of neurotransmitter signaling in SCLC etiology and points to possible leads for drug development.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: PLoS One. 2011;6(9):e24132. Epub 2011 Sep 8. Link to article on publisher's site

DOI of Published Version



Copyright: © 2011 Improgo et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal Title

PloS one

PubMed ID




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