Ahmad Besaratinia, PhD

Professor of Research Population and Public Health Sciences

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Overview

Dr. Besaratinia’s research focuses on the molecular causes and mechanistic underpinning of human disease. His laboratory investigates the role of genetics and epigenetics in the development of a wide variety of diseases, including cancer at multiple organ sites, cardiovascular-, respiratory-, immune-related (inflammatory), and metabolic diseases. Emphasis is placed on genetic mechanisms, such as DNA damage & repair and mutagenesis, and epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation, histone modifications, and non-coding RNA dysregulation. Of special interest are chronic diseases with modifiable risk factors, including lifestyle, diet, and occupational/medicinal/environmental determinants. A primary area of research is tobacco-related diseases in connection to the use of new and emerging tobacco products, specifically electronic cigarettes (vapes). Dr. Besaratinia’s group conducts human subject research investigating the general population, at-risk populations, disease cohorts, or clinical trials, complemented with experimental studies in laboratory animals and cell culture models. His team uses a combination of classic molecular biology techniques and cutting-edge ‘omics’ technologies to detect alterations in the genome, epigenome, and transcriptome in human cells and tissues, or laboratory mice and cell cultures treated with known or suspected disease-causing agents. Systems biology approaches are then deployed to integrate the results in order to elucidate how the interplay of genetic, epigenetic, and transcriptomic changes contributes to the development of diseases. The ultimate goal is to develop molecular markers, otherwise known as ‘biomarkers’, that can be used for prevention, early detection, treatment, and monitoring of the progression of diseases.

Publications

  • The State of Research and Weight of Evidence on the Epigenetic Effects of Bisphenol A Int J Mol Sci. 2023 Apr 27; 24(9). . View in PubMed
  • Vaping Dose, Device Type, and E-Liquid Flavor are Determinants of DNA Damage in Electronic Cigarette Users Nicotine Tob Res. 2023 05 22; 25(6):1145-1154. . View in PubMed
  • DNA Hydroxymethylation in Smoking-Associated Cancers Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Feb 28; 23(5). . View in PubMed
  • Secondhand smoke affects reproductive functions by altering the mouse testis transcriptome, and leads to select intron retention in Pde1a Environ Int. 2022 03; 161:107086. . View in PubMed
  • The consequential impact of JUUL on youth vaping and the landscape of tobacco products: The state of play in the COVID-19 era Prev Med Rep. 2021 Jun; 22:101374. . View in PubMed
  • Hydroxychloroquine induces oxidative DNA damage and mutation in mammalian cells DNA Repair (Amst). 2021 10; 106:103180. . View in PubMed
  • Relationships among smoking, oxidative stress, inflammation, macromolecular damage, and cancer Mutat Res Rev Mutat Res. 2021 Jan-Jun; 787:108365. . View in PubMed
  • A novel role for vaping in mitochondrial gene dysregulation and inflammation fundamental to disease development Sci Rep. 2021 11 23; 11(1):22773. . View in PubMed
  • From Tobacco Cigarettes to Electronic Cigarettes: The Two Sides of a Nicotine Coin Front Oral Health. 2021; 2:790634. . View in PubMed
  • COVID-19: a pandemic converged with global tobacco epidemic and widespread vaping-state of the evidence Carcinogenesis. 2021 08 19; 42(8):1009-1022. . View in PubMed
  • Vaping epidemic: challenges and opportunities Cancer Causes Control. 2020 Jul; 31(7):663-667. . View in PubMed
  • Secondhand Smoke Induces Liver Steatosis through Deregulation of Genes Involved in Hepatic Lipid Metabolism Int J Mol Sci. 2020 Feb 14; 21(4). . View in PubMed
  • Hypomethylation of LINE-1 repeat elements and global loss of DNA hydroxymethylation in vapers and smokers Epigenetics. 2020 08; 15(8):816-829. . View in PubMed
  • Spontaneous and photosensitization-induced mutations in primary mouse cells transitioning through senescence and immortalization J Biol Chem. 2020 07 17; 295(29):9974-9985. . View in PubMed
  • Vaping: A growing global health concern EClinicalMedicine. 2019 Dec; 17:100208. . View in PubMed
  • Deregulation of Biologically Significant Genes and Associated Molecular Pathways in the Oral Epithelium of Electronic Cigarette Users Int J Mol Sci. 2019 Feb 10; 20(3). . View in PubMed
  • DNA Hydroxymethylation at the Interface of the Environment and Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019 08 05; 16(15). . View in PubMed
  • Mutation Analysis in Cultured Cells of Transgenic Rodents Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Jan 16; 19(1). . View in PubMed
  • A Versatile Assay for Detection of Aberrant DNA Methylation in Bladder Cancer Methods Mol Biol. 2018; 1655:29-41. . View in PubMed
  • The Lambda Select cII Mutation Detection System J Vis Exp. 2018 04 26; (134). . View in PubMed
  • An opportune and unique research to evaluate the public health impact of electronic cigarettes Cancer Causes Control. 2017 Oct; 28(10):1167-1171. . View in PubMed
  • Limited mutagenicity of electronic cigarettes in mouse or human cells in vitro Lung Cancer. 2017 10; 112:41-46. . View in PubMed
  • Expression of epigenetic modifiers is not significantly altered by exposure to secondhand smoke Lung Cancer. 2015 Dec; 90(3):598-603. . View in PubMed
  • Exposure of mice to secondhand smoke elicits both transient and long-lasting transcriptional changes in cancer-related functional networks Int J Cancer. 2015 May 15; 136(10):2253-63. . View in PubMed
  • The lingering question of menthol in cigarettes Cancer Causes Control. 2015 Feb; 26(2):165-169. . View in PubMed
  • Epigenetics of human melanoma: promises and challenges J Mol Cell Biol. 2014 Oct; 6(5):356-67. . View in PubMed
  • Electronic cigarettes: the road ahead Prev Med. 2014 Sep; 66:65-7. . View in PubMed
  • Epigenetic targeting of the Nanog pathway and signaling networks during chemical carcinogenesis Carcinogenesis. 2014 Aug; 35(8):1726-36. . View in PubMed
  • Alterations of DNA methylome in human bladder cancer Epigenetics. 2013 Oct; 8(10):1013-22. . View in PubMed
  • Genotoxicity of tobacco smoke-derived aromatic amines and bladder cancer: current state of knowledge and future research directions FASEB J. 2013 Jun; 27(6):2090-100. . View in PubMed
  • Mammalian cells acquire epigenetic hallmarks of human cancer during immortalization Nucleic Acids Res. 2013 Jan 07; 41(1):182-95. . View in PubMed
  • Whole DNA methylome profiling in mice exposed to secondhand smoke Epigenetics. 2012 Nov; 7(11):1302-14. . View in PubMed
  • A high-throughput next-generation sequencing-based method for detecting the mutational fingerprint of carcinogens Nucleic Acids Res. 2012 Aug; 40(15):e116. . View in PubMed
  • New experimental data linking secondhand smoke exposure to lung cancer in nonsmokers FASEB J. 2012 May; 26(5):1845-54. . View in PubMed
  • Interactions between hepatitis B virus and aflatoxin B(1): effects on p53 induction in HepaRG cells J Gen Virol. 2012 Mar; 93(Pt 3):640-650. . View in PubMed
  • Organ specificity of the bladder carcinogen 4-aminobiphenyl in inducing DNA damage and mutation in mice Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2012 Feb; 5(2):299-308. . View in PubMed
  • UV wavelength-dependent DNA damage and human non-melanoma and melanoma skin cancer Photochem Photobiol Sci. 2012 Jan; 11(1):90-7. . View in PubMed
  • Measuring the formation and repair of UV damage at the DNA sequence level by ligation-mediated PCR Methods Mol Biol. 2012; 920:189-202. . View in PubMed
  • Whole body exposure of mice to secondhand smoke induces dose-dependent and persistent promutagenic DNA adducts in the lung Mutat Res. 2011 Nov 01; 716(1-2):92-8. . View in PubMed
  • Wavelength dependence of ultraviolet radiation-induced DNA damage as determined by laser irradiation suggests that cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers are the principal DNA lesions produced by terrestrial sunlight FASEB J. 2011 Sep; 25(9):3079-91. . View in PubMed
  • Loss of Rassf1a enhances p53-mediated tumor predisposition and accelerates progression to aneuploidy Oncogene. 2011 Feb 10; 30(6):690-700. . View in PubMed
  • Uveal melanoma and GNA11 mutations: a new piece added to the puzzle Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. 2011 Feb; 24(1):18-20. . View in PubMed
  • Unveiling the methylation status of CpG dinucleotides in the substituted segment of the human p53 knock-in (Hupki) mouse genome Mol Carcinog. 2010 Dec; 49(12):999-1006. . View in PubMed
  • Applications of the human p53 knock-in (Hupki) mouse model for human carcinogen testing FASEB J. 2010 Aug; 24(8):2612-9. . View in PubMed
  • Investigating the epigenetic effects of a prototype smoke-derived carcinogen in human cells PLoS One. 2010 May 12; 5(5):e10594. . View in PubMed
  • Transcription-dependent cytosine deamination is a novel mechanism in ultraviolet light-induced mutagenesis Curr Biol. 2010 Jan 26; 20(2):170-5. . View in PubMed
  • In vitro recapitulating of TP53 mutagenesis in hepatocellular carcinoma associated with dietary aflatoxin B1 exposureGastroenterology. 2009 Sep; 137(3):1127-371137. e1-5. . View in PubMed
  • Mutational spectra of human cancer Hum Genet. 2009 Jun; 125(5-6):493-506. . View in PubMed
  • Acrolein: excessive cytotoxicity or potent mutagenicity? Chem Res Toxicol. 2009 May; 22(5):751-3; author reply 753-4.. View in PubMed
  • DNA-lesion mapping in mammalian cells Methods. 2009 May; 48(1):35-9. . View in PubMed
  • Sunlight ultraviolet irradiation and BRAF V600 mutagenesis in human melanoma Hum Mutat. 2008 Aug; 29(8):983-91. . View in PubMed
  • Second-hand smoke and human lung cancer Lancet Oncol. 2008 Jul; 9(7):657-66. . View in PubMed
  • Rapid repair of UVA-induced oxidized purines and persistence of UVB-induced dipyrimidine lesions determine the mutagenicity of sunlight in mouse cells FASEB J. 2008 Jul; 22(7):2379-92. . View in PubMed
  • Lack of mutagenicity of acrolein-induced DNA adducts in mouse and human cells Cancer Res. 2007 Dec 15; 67(24):11640-7. . View in PubMed
  • Riboflavin activated by ultraviolet A1 irradiation induces oxidative DNA damage-mediated mutations inhibited by vitamin C Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Apr 03; 104(14):5953-8. . View in PubMed
  • Mutagenicity of ultraviolet A radiation in the lacI transgene in Big Blue mouse embryonic fibroblasts Mutat Res. 2007 Apr 01; 617(1-2):71-8. . View in PubMed
  • A review of mechanisms of acrylamide carcinogenicity Carcinogenesis. 2007 Mar; 28(3):519-28. . View in PubMed
  • Investigating human cancer etiology by DNA lesion footprinting and mutagenicity analysis Carcinogenesis. 2006 Aug; 27(8):1526-37. . View in PubMed
  • The role of DNA polymerase iota in UV mutational spectra Mutat Res. 2006 Jul 25; 599(1-2):58-65. . View in PubMed
  • DNA lesions induced by UV A1 and B radiation in human cells: comparative analyses in the overall genome and in the p53 tumor suppressor gene Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005 Jul 19; 102(29):10058-63. . View in PubMed
  • Investigating DNA adduct-targeted mutagenicity of tamoxifen: preferential formation of tamoxifen-DNA adducts in the human p53 gene in SV40 immortalized hepatocytes but not endometrial carcinoma cells Biochemistry. 2005 Jun 14; 44(23):8418-27. . View in PubMed
  • Mutations induced by ultraviolet light Mutat Res. 2005 Apr 01; 571(1-2):19-31. . View in PubMed
  • DNA adduction and mutagenic properties of acrylamide Mutat Res. 2005 Feb 07; 580(1-2):31-40. . View in PubMed
  • Similar mutagenicity of photoactivated porphyrins and ultraviolet A radiation in mouse embryonic fibroblasts: involvement of oxidative DNA lesions in mutagenesis Biochemistry. 2004 Dec 14; 43(49):15557-66. . View in PubMed
  • Biological consequences of 8-methoxypsoralen-photoinduced lesions: sequence-specificity of mutations and preponderance of T to C and T to a mutations J Invest Dermatol. 2004 Dec; 123(6):1140-6. . View in PubMed
  • DNA damage, repair, and mutation induction by (+)-Syn and (-)-anti-dibenzo[a,l]pyrene-11,12-diol-13,14-epoxides in mouse cells Cancer Res. 2004 Oct 15; 64(20):7321-8. . View in PubMed
  • Genotoxicity of acrylamide and glycidamide J Natl Cancer Inst. 2004 Jul 07; 96(13):1023-9. . View in PubMed
  • G-to-T transversions and small tandem base deletions are the hallmark of mutations induced by ultraviolet a radiation in mammalian cells Biochemistry. 2004 Jun 29; 43(25):8169-77. . View in PubMed
  • Enhancement of the mutagenicity of benzo(a)pyrene diol epoxide by a nonmutagenic dose of ultraviolet A radiation Cancer Res. 2003 Dec 15; 63(24):8708-16. . View in PubMed
  • Weak yet distinct mutagenicity of acrylamide in mammalian cells J Natl Cancer Inst. 2003 Jun 18; 95(12):889-96. . View in PubMed
  • Mutational signature of the proximate bladder carcinogen N-hydroxy-4-acetylaminobiphenyl: inconsistency with the p53 mutational spectrum in bladder cancer Cancer Res. 2002 Aug 01; 62(15):4331-8. . View in PubMed
  • A molecular dosimetry approach to assess human exposure to environmental tobacco smoke in pubs Carcinogenesis. 2002 Jul; 23(7):1171-6. . View in PubMed
  • Biomonitoring of tobacco smoke carcinogenicity by dosimetry of DNA adducts and genotyping and phenotyping of biotransformational enzymes: a review on polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons Biomarkers. 2002 May-Jun; 7(3):209-29. . View in PubMed
  • Effects of oral administration of N-acetyl-L-cysteine: a multi-biomarker study in smokers Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2002 Feb; 11(2):167-75. . View in PubMed
  • A multi-biomarker approach to study the effects of smoking on oxidative DNA damage and repair and antioxidative defense mechanisms Carcinogenesis. 2001 Mar; 22(3):395-401. . View in PubMed
  • Immunoperoxidase detection of 4-aminobiphenyl- and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons-DNA adducts in induced sputum of smokers and non-smokers Mutat Res. 2000 Jul 10; 468(2):125-35. . View in PubMed
  • Comparison between smoking-related DNA adduct analysis in induced sputum and peripheral blood lymphocytes Carcinogenesis. 2000 Jul; 21(7):1335-40. . View in PubMed
  • Applicability of induced sputum for molecular dosimetry of exposure to inhalatory carcinogens: 32P-postlabeling of lipophilic DNA adducts in smokers and nonsmokers Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2000 Apr; 9(4):367-72. . View in PubMed
  • Immunoperoxidase detection of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon-DNA adducts in mouth floor and buccal mucosa cells of smokers and nonsmokers Environ Mol Mutagen. 2000; 36(2):127-33. . View in PubMed