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Paul M. Campbell, PhD

Assistant Professor

  • Department:Pharmacology & Physiology
  • Education: PhD in Pharmacology & Therapeutics, McGill University
Research Overview

Research Interests: Cancer cell biology, signaling, tumor invasion and metastasis


The greatest clinical problems in cancer arise when tumors spread and migrate to other parts of the body. As such, the research focus of our lab is to understand the signaling mechanisms of cancer invasion and metastasis. The lab has a concentration on the role of the K-Ras family of small GTPase signaling molecules in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), however discoveries in PDAC metastasis may be applied to other tumors, and new information gained from the lab PDAC studies might point to novel targets for other cancers as well.

PDAC is the most fatal gastrointestinal cancer, with KRAS mutated in >90% of tumors. An important but underappreciated area of malignancy is the influence of K-Ras signaling among the epithelial, stromal and vascular components of the tumor microenvironment. Tumors need a blood supply in order to both expand and spread, and our recent research indicates that the K-Ras signaling cascades link different cellular populations of the tumor microenvironment in the initiation of angiogenesis. Our work investigates the particulars of intra- and intercellular signaling to promote tumor growth and metastasis and prevent cell death and senescence. The lab uses a variety of cancer cell lines, genetically-engineered cells, pharmacology, molecular biology, animal modeling and translational science to understand cancer metastasis and to discover and validate targets for drug development.


Selected References


"Analyzing Ras-associated Cell Proliferation Signaling"
M.C. Stout, E. Asiimwe, J.R. Birkenstamm, S.Y. Kim, P.M. Campbell
Methods Mol Biol, 1170:393-409 (2014)

"Oncogenic Ras pushes (and pulls) cell cycle progression through ERK activation"
P.M. Campbell
Methods Mol Biol, 1170:155-163 (2014)

“Epicatechin-rich cocoa polyphenol inhibits Kras-activated pancreatic ductal carcinoma cell growth in vitro and in a mouse model”
H.R. Siddique, D.J. Liao, S.K. Mishra, T. Schuster, L. Wang, B. Matter, P.M. Campbell, P. Villalta, S. Nanda, Y. Deng, M. Saleem
International Journal of Cancer, 131:1720 (2012)

"Targeting Ras for anti-cancer drug discovery"
J.J. Yeh, J.P. Madigan, P.M. Campbell, P.J. Roberts, L.M. DeGraffrenreid and C.J. Der
In Intercellular Signaling in Development and Disease, E.A. Dennis and R.A. Bradshaw, eds. Elsevier Press, pp. 335-355 (2011)

"TLN-4601 suppresses growth and induces apoptosis of pancreatic carcinoma cells through inhibition of Ras-MAPK signaling"
P.M. Campbell*, N. Boufaied*, J.J. Fiordalisi, A.D. Cox, P. Falardeau, C.J. Der and H. Gourdeau * These authors contributed equally to this work.
Journal of Molecular Signaling, 5:18 (2010)

"K-Ras promotes angiogenesis mediated by immortalized human pancreatic epithelial cells through MAP kinase signaling pathways"
Y. Matsuo*, P.M. Campbell*, R.A. Brekken, B. Sung, M.M. Ouellette, J.B. Fleming, B.B. Aggarwal, C.J. Der and S. Guha * These authors contributed equally to this work.
Molecular Cancer Research, 7:799-808 (2009)

"Targeting Ras for anti-cancer drug discovery"
J.J. Yeh, J.P. Madigan, P.M. Campbell, P.J. Roberts, L.M. DeGraffrenreid, C.J. Der
In Handbook of Cell Signaling, 2nd Edition, R.A. Bradshaw and E.A. Dennis, eds. Oxford: Academic Press, pp. 2837-2857 (2009)

"Ras-driven transformation of human nestin-positive pancreatic epithelial cells"
P.M. Campbell, K.M. Lee, M.M. Ouellette, H.J. Kim, A.L. Groehler, V. Khazak, C.J. Der
Methods Enzymol 439:451-65 (2008)

"K-Ras promotes growth transformation and invasion of immortalized human pancreatic cells by Raf and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase signaling"
P.M. Campbell, A.L. Groehler, K.M. Lee, M.M. Ouellette, V. Khazak and C.J. Der
Cancer Research, 67:2098-2106 (2007)

"Divergent roles for RalA and RalB in malignant growth of human pancreatic carcinoma cells"
K.H. Lim, K. O'Hayer, S.J. Adam, S.D. Kendall, P.M. Campbell, C.J. Der and C.M. Counter
Current Biology, 16:2385-2394 (2006)

"Genetic and pharmacologic dissection of Ras effector utilization"
P.M. Campbell, A. Singh, F.J. Williams, K. Frantz, A.S. Ülkü, G.G. Kelley and C.J. Der
Methods in Enzymology, 407:195-217 (2006)

"Methylated DNA binding protein 2 antisense inhibitors suppress tumorigenesis of human cancer lines in vitro and in vivo"
P.M. Campbell, V. Bovenzi, M. Szyf
Carcinogenesis 25:499-507 (2004)

"Oncogenic Ras and its role in invasion and metastasis"
P.M. Campbell and C.J. Der
Seminars in Cancer Biology, 14(2):105-14 (2004)

"The role of active demethylation in cancer and its therapeutic potential"
M. Szyf , P.M. Campbell, N. Detich, J-N. Ou, S. Hamm, V. Bovenzi
In DNA Methylation and Cancer Therapy, Landes Bioscience Publishing (2004)


Dr. Campbell is an assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacology & Physiology at Drexel University College of Medicine. He teaches in Medical Pharmacology, as well as in the Pharmacology and Physiology, Molecular and Cell Biology and Genetics, and Biochemistry graduate programs. He is currently the course director for Methods in Biomedical Research.

Academic Location

Department of Pharmacology & Physiology
245 North 15th Street
Mail Stop #488
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Phone: 215-762-8544
Fax: 215-762-2299

Additional Information

Email Dr. Campbell

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