Congratulations Dorothea Portius, for her successful thesis defence!


On Apri 26th 2017 Dorothea Portius from the lab of Prof. Michelangelo Foti successfully defended her thesis entitled “Distinct Contributions of Hepatic Insulin Receptor and IGF-1 Receptor Signaling in Metabolic Alterations and Hepatocarcinogenesis Associated with Hepatic PTEN Deficiency in Mice”.

Since joining the lab of Prof. Foti in 2012, Dorothea has worked on studying the interaction between insulin signaling, the signaling of the insulin-like growth factor IGF-1 and the tumor suppressor PTEN. The knockout of PTEN in the liver causes mice to develop a progressive liver disease that eventually evolves into liver cancer, and that resembles the progression non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in humans. For this reason, Dorothea embarked in an ambitious project examining the effects of liver-specific deletion of the insulin receptor and the IGF-1 receptor, alone or in combination, in the context of PTEN liver knockout. Her extensive studies, comparing and contrasting 5 different transgenic mouse models have led to deeper insights into our understanding of the complex interplay of these critical metabolic signaling pathways and their impact on liver disease and cancer development. In addition, Dorothea was the lead author in a review focusing on the role of microRNA control of PPAR receptors in metabolic disease and cancer, and participated in writing a review on the role of microRNAs in fatty liver disease development.

Dorothea is now pursuing postdoctoral studies at the prestigious Salk Institute in California.

Wishing Dorothea the very best in her bright future!























Posted by: P. Nunes-Hasler

9 May 2017