Dr. No-Hee Park is a prominent scientist in oral and craniofacial research with 170 scientific publications in distinguished research journals. His major research activities have been in oral (head and neck) cancer and aging research. Park's contribution to the understanding of the mechanisms of oral cancer development is enormous, and resulted in new mode of therapy. In the early stage of his career (1975-1983), Park developed animal models to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of antiviral agents and to study the molecular mechanisms of numerous antiviral agents (e.g., Zovirax®) against herpes simplex virus.
In later stages of his research career (since 1983), Park began to investigate the mechanisms of human oral cancer development. Initially, he found the combined carcinogenicity of herpes simplex virus (HSV, the virus that causes cold sores around the human mouth) and cancer-causing chemicals found in tobacco. Then he investigated and clearly documented the combined role of tobacco (or chemical carcinogens derived from tobacco extract) and the virus on the development of oral cancer in laboratory animals. More recently, Park:
- developed an in vitro system (extremely useful for studying the mechanisms of oral cancer development) and clearly documented the role of human papillomavirus (HPV, the virus that causes warts and may be related to other cancers) in the development of oral cancer;
- clearly documented the close association between chromosome (cellular DNA) instability and cancer development;
- developed many cell lines that are useful for cancer research;
- documented a new aging model in test tubes, using cells derived from the human mouth; and
- successfully converted normal human epithelial cells into mesenchymal cells, which were able to differentiate to bony cells and fat cells.
Currently his major interests are in the areas of cellular aging, molecular carcinogenesis and stem cell research. Through his cancer and aging research, Park has provided significant contributions to enhance the wellbeing of individuals and society, particularly by elucidating the role of human papillomavirus in the development of human cancer.
Selected Cancer-Related Publications:
Kang MK, Kim RH, Kim SJ, Yip FK, Shin KH, Dimri GP, Christensen R, Han T, Park NH. Elevated Bmi-1 expression is associated with dysplastic cell transformation during oral carcinogenesis and is required for cancer cell replication and survival. British J Cancer. 2007; 96:126-133.
Kim RH, Kang MK, Shin KH, Oo ZM, Han T, Baluda MA, Park NH. Bmi-1 cooperates with human papillomavirus type 16 E6 to immortalize normal human oral keratinocytes. Experimental Cell Res. 2007; 313:462-472.
Shin KH, Kim RH, Kim R, Kim S, Lim PK, Yochim JM, Baluda MA, Park NH. p53 promotes the fidelity of DNA end-joining activity by, in part, enhancing the expression of heterogeneous nuclear ribonuleoprotein G. DNA Repair. 2007; 6:830-940.
Oh KJ, Kalinina A, Park NH, Bagchi S. Deregulation of eIF4E: 4E-BP1 in differentiated human papillomavirus-containing cells leads to high levels of expression of the E7 oncoprotein. J Virol. 2006; 80:7079-7088.
Shin KH, Kang MK, Kim RH, Christensen R, Park NH. Heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein G demonstrates anticancer effect in oral squamous cell carcinoma cells. Clin Cancer Res. 2006; 12:3222-3228.