Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Dr. Megan Keniry

Second Advisor

Dr. Scott Gunn

Third Advisor

Dr. Robert Gilkerson


The Phosphatidylinositol 3 Kinase (PI3K) pathway is an essential intracellular signaling pathway that regulates cellular growth, survival, and fate. Canonically, the activation of this pathway removes forkhead box subfamily O transcription factors (FOXO -1, -3, and -4) from the nucleus. However, in cancer cells such as glioblastoma multiforme, FOXO factors are at least in part nuclear despite the activation of the PI3K pathway. Previous research indicated that FOXO3 localization was not affected when the pathway was inhibited in breast cancer cells, which challenged the conventional paradigms for FOXO factor regulation. Therefore, we were interested in investigating the nuclear localization of FOXO transcription factors in additional cancer settings such as glioblastoma. By inhibiting PI3K and other pathways linked to FOXO factors, we examined their effects on FOXO transcription factor localization. We found that FOXO factors bypass the regulation by PI3K in order to be localized in the nucleus in glioblastoma cells.


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