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JCCC Member Directory

Cho-Lea Tso, Ph.D.
Cho-Lea Tso, Ph.D.


Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, Surgical Oncology
Member, Brain Research Institute
Member, JCCC Signal Transduction and Therapeutics Program Area

Contact Information:

(310) 825-1066 Office
(310) 825-3565 Lab
(310) 825-0751 Lab

Scientific Interest(s):

Dr. Cho-Lea Tso’s research focuses on characterizing and targeting glioblastoma (GBM) stem cells, which are a previously unrecognized subpopulation within the tumor mass and hypothesized to be responsible for tumor development and tumor recurrence. She and her colleagues have established several patient-derived GBM stem cell (GSC) lines and animal models, which allow them to characterize functional linked properties of GSC at cellular, molecular, and genomic levels. Tso’s group aims to identify key factors and developmental gene pathways that maintain GSC quiescent, self-renewing, and anti-apoptotic features, leading to treatment resistance and sustained tumor growth. Their ultimate goal is to translate these knowledge and experimental results into new strategies for developing and designing an effective GBM stem cell-targeted anti-cancer therapy, which is not targeted in the current brain cancer therapy.

Selected Cancer-Related Publications:

Liu Y, Ye F, Yamada K, Tso JL, Zhang Y, Nguyen DH, Dong Q, Soto H, Choe J, Dembo A, Wheeler H, Eskin A, Schmid I, Yong WH, Mischel PS, Cloughesy TF, Kornblum HI, Nelson SF, Liau LM, Tso CL. Autocrine endothelin-3/endothelin receptor B signaling maintains cellular and molecular properties of glioblastoma stem cells. Mol Cancer Res. 2011 Dec;9(12):1668-85. Epub 2011 Oct 19.

Liu Q, Nguyen DH, Dong Q, Shitaku P, Chung K, Liu OY, Tso JL, Liu JY, Konkankit V, Cloughesy TF, Mischel PS, Lane TF, Liau LM, Nelson SF, Tso CL. Molecular properties of CD133+ glioblastoma stem cells derived from treatment-refractory recurrent brain tumors. J Neurooncol. 2009 Aug;94(1):1-19. Epub 2009 May 26.

Carlson MR, Pope WB, Horvath S, Braunstein JG, Nghiemphu P, Tso CL, Mellinghoff I, Lai A, Liau LM, Mischel PS, Dong J, Nelson SF, Cloughesy TF. Relationship between survival and edema in malignant gliomas: role of vascular endothelial growth factor and neuronal pentraxin 2. Clin Cancer Res. 2007 May 1;13(9):2592-8.

Tso CL, Freije WA, Day A, Chen Z, Merriman B, Perlina A, Lee Y, Dia EQ, Yoshimoto K, Mischel PS, Liau LM, Cloughesy TF, Nelson SF. Distinct transcription profiles of primary and secondary glioblastoma subgroups. Cancer Res. 2006 Jan 1;66(1):159-67.

Tso CL, Shintaku P, Chen J, Liu Q, Liu J, Chen Z, Yoshimoto K, Mischel PS, Cloughesy TF, Liau LM, Nelson SF. Primary glioblastomas express mesenchymal stem-like properties. Mol Cancer Res. 2006 Sep;4(9):607-19.