Biology Talk: Identification of CHRNA5 Gene Expression Network in Breast Cancer

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 - 3:30pm
Dean’s Smart Lab, 4th floor, SBASSE Building, LUMS

Department of Biology presents

Identification of CHRNA5 Gene Expression Network and Associated Prognostic Potential in Breast Cancer

Guest Speaker: Dr. Huma Shehwana
Date: Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Time: 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Venue: Dean’s Smart Lab, 4th floor, SBASSE Building, LUMS
Host:  Dr. Amir Faisal


CHRNA5 is a subunit of cholinergic receptors and its role in breast cancer has not been studied before. During my PhD, role of CHRNA5 in breast cancer was studied for its association with epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), epithelial differentiation, estrogen (E2) signaling and patient survival. Meta-analysis and network analysis of in-vitro and in-vivo gene expression datasets revealed that CHRNA5, itself, and its positively co-expressed gene neighbors were likely secondary targets of E2-signaling; overexpressed in ER- breast cancer patients; associated with proliferation and indicators of worse prognosis. Based on meta-analysis of multiple independent cohorts processed in the study, an online web tool E2S (Estrogen (E2) to Survival) was developed to evaluate effect of estrogen signaling, prognosis and co-expression module on any queried gene.

Dr. Huma Shehwana completed her BS in Bioinformatics (cGPA: 3.93; second position) from International Islamic University, Islamabad in 2011. She was awarded with an HEC fellowship and obtained a Master’s leading to a PhD degree from Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey (September 2012 to August 2017). During her PhD, she has majorly worked as a Bioinformatician and in some cases complemented the finding with a wet-lab validation.