Biomedical Sciences ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 4-14-2020


RNA binding proteins (RBPs) regulate gene expression by controlling mRNA export, translation, and stability. When altered, some RBPs allow cancer cells to grow, survive, and metastasize. Cold-inducible RNA binding protein (CIRP) is overexpressed in a subset of breast cancers, induces proliferation in breast cancer cell lines, and inhibits apoptosis. We generated a transgenic mouse model overexpressing human CIRP in the mammary epithelium to ask if it plays a role in mammary gland development. We also assessed the effects of CIRP on breast tumorigenesis using breeding crosses with the PyMT mouse model for breast cancer. CIRP decreased proliferation at the lactational switch during mammary gland development, but no differences in morphology were found compared to wild-type mice. In the PyMT model, CIRP decreased tumor growth, pulmonary metastasis, and several protumorigenic cytokines. CIRP also decreased CD3+CD4+ T-cells while increasing CD3+CD8+ T-cells, suggesting CIRP decreased tumorigenesis by altering inflammation.


CIRP, RNA, Inflammation, Breast Cancer, RNA-Binding Protein

Document Type




Degree Name

Biomedical Sciences

Level of Degree


Department Name

Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program

First Committee Member (Chair)

Rebecca S. Hartley

Second Committee Member

Helen J. Hathaway

Third Committee Member

Judy L. Cannon

Fourth Committee Member

Nora Perrone-Bizzozero