Roderick H. Dashwood

Roderick H. Dashwood

Professor & Director

John S. Dunn Chair in Disease Prevention

Center for Epigenetics & Disease Prevention
2121 W. Holcombe Blvd.
Houston, TX   77030

Phone: 713-677-7806
Fax: 713-677-7784

Education and Training

B.S. Biological Sciences (Cellular Toxicology), University of Plymouth, UK (1982)

M.S. Toxicology, University of Surrey, UK (1983)

Ph.D. Genetic Toxicology/Carcinogenesis, University of Portsmouth and ICI Central Toxicology Laboratory, UK (1986)

Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology (2017)

Research Interests

The current focus is on genetic and epigenetic mechanisms in cancer development.  The genetic basis of cancer is studied through cultured human cancer cells and whole animal approaches, including transgenic and knockout models.  These models are employed to examine changes in oncogenes and tumor suppressors (e.g., K-ras, β-catenin, APC) and the influence of chemoprotective agents and anticancer drug candidates.  The epigenetic basis of cancer is studied through work on histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors and changes in protein acetylation in both cancer cells and normal cells treated with dietary agents/anticancer drug candidates. Sulforaphane from broccoli, garlic organosulfur and organoselenium compounds and a short-chain fatty acid derived from gut fermentation of dietary fiber (butyrate) inhibit HDAC activity in human cancer cells and trigger growth arrest/apoptosis. The molecular mechanisms are pursued. To translate this work to humans, HDACs and protein acetylation changes are being examined in volunteers undergoing screening colonoscopy exams.

Selected Publications

Myzak M, Karplus PA, Chung FL, Dashwood RH (2004) A novel mechanism of chemoprotection by sulforaphane: Inhibition of histone deacetylase. Cancer Res 64:5767-74.

Li Q, Dashwood RH (2004) AP-2a associates with APC/b-catenin and inhibits b-catenin/TCF transcriptional activity in colorectal cancer cells.  J Biol Chem 279:45669-75.

Wang R, Löhr CL, Fischer K, Dashwood WM, Greenwood JA, Ho E, Williams DE, Ashktorab H, Dashwood MR, Dashwood RH (2013) Epigenetic inactivation of endothelin-2 (ET-2) and ET-3 in colon cancer.  Int J Cancer 132:1004-12.

Parasramka MA, Dashwood WM, Wang R, Abdelli A, Bailey GS, Williams DE, Ho E, Dashwood RH (2012) MicroRNA profiling of carcinogen-induced rat colon tumors and the influence of dietary spinach.  Mol Nutr Food Res 56:1259-69.

Parasramka M, Dashwood WM, Wang R, Saeed HH, Williams DE, Ho E, Dashwood RH (2012) A role for low-abundance miRNAs in colon cancer: the miR-206/Krϋppel-like factor 4 (KLF4) axis.  Clin Epigenetics 4:16.

Kang Y, Nian H, Rajendran P, Kim E, Dashwood WM, Pinto JT, Boardman LA, Thibodeau SN, Limburg PJ, Löhr CV, Bisson WH, Williams DE, Ho E, Dashwood RH (2014) HDAC8 and STAT3 repress BMF gene activity in colon cancer cells. Cell Death Disease 5:e1476.

Kim H, Banerjee N, Ivanov I, Prudhomme KR, Bisson WH, Dashwood RH, Talcott ST, Mertens-Talcott, SU (2016) Comparison of anti-inflammatory mechanisms of mango (Mangifera indica L.) and pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) in a preclinical model of colitis.  Mol Nutr Food Res 60:1912-23.

Wang R, Kang Y, Löhr CV, Fischer K, Bradford C, Johnson G, Dashwood WM, Williams DE, Ho E, Dashwood RH (2016) Reciprocal regulation of BMF and BIRC5 (Survivin) linked to Eomes overexpression in colorectal cancer. Cancer Lett 381:341-8.

Ertem F, Rajendran P, Dashwood WM, Raju GS, Dashwood RH (2016) Development of a murine colonoscopic polypectomy model. Gastrointest Endosc 83:1272-6.

Wang R, Chen Y-S, Dashwood WM, Li Q, Löhr CV, Fischer KA, Ho E, Williams DE, Dashwood RH (2017)  Divergent roles of p120-catenin isoforms linked to altered cell viability, proliferation, and invasiveness in carcinogen-induced rat skin tumors.  Mol Carcinogen 56:1733-1742.

Johnson GS, Li J, Beaver LM, Dashwood WM, Sun D, Rajendran P, Williams DE, Ho E, Dashwood RH (2016) A functional pseudogene, NMRAL2P, is regulated by Nrf2 and serves as a co-activator of NQO1 in sulforaphane-treated colon cancer cells.  Mol Nutr Food Res 61:1600769.

Ertem FU, Zhang W, Chang K, Dashwood WM, Rajendran P, Sun D, Abudayyeh A, Vilar E, Abdelrahim M, Dashwood RH (2017) Oncogenic targets Mmp7, S100a9, Nppb and Aldh1a3 from transcriptome profiling of FAP and Pirc adenomas are downregulated in response to tumor suppression by Clotam. Int J Cancer 140:460-8.


For a complete list of publications, please visit: