Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Human Genetics

First Advisor

Joseph W. Landry


Following ovarian and prostate cancer, lung cancer is one of the most frequent malignancies with sex differences in diagnosis, prognosis, and mortality. According to epidemiology research, men have a higher lifetime risk of developing lung cancer than women, but this gap has narrowed in recent decades. Many studies have found that women outlive men after metastatic disease treatment and surgical resection for early-stage lung cancer. This disparity prompted Landry's lab to want to investigate the cause of the difference. Landry's lab directly observed that tumor development in lung cancer differed depending on the gender of the mice, and female hormones may influence NK cell response, particularly NKG2D-mediated NK cell response, in tumor formation. Our study of NK-cell regulatory ligands on lung cancers employs flow cytometry to determine why there is a gender difference in LLC/CMT-167 tumor-bearing mice. Ultimately, we would like to determine if this sex difference is observed in human tumor models. Therefore, we developed a simple method involving busulfan conditioning followed by a graft of fetal cord blood CD34+ cells into mice capable of reconstituting T cells, B cells, NK cells, and myeloid immune cell compartments (using a variety of mouse strains including NSG, NSG-hIL15, and NSG-SGM3), and we will use these mice to study the role of NK cells in lung cancer.


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Available for download on Monday, May 10, 2027