Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Science

First Committee Member

George Plopper

Number of Pages



Inhibiting cancer cell migration could greatly improve the prognosis of cancer patients. Prior to commercialization of the Plopper laboratory designed a 96-well plate, we optimized our in vitro migration and cell viability assays to meet the standards set by the National Cancer Institute for use in a large-scale drug screen for anti-migration compounds. Using these assays, we measured the cytotoxicity and migration-inhibiting effect of dimethyl sulfuoxide, a drug solvent, in three cancer and one non-cancer cell lines. Next, we investigated plant-derived compounds called monoterpenes, known chemopreventive/chemotherapeutic agents, for non-cytotoxic, migration-inhibiting properties in MCF-10A normal and MDA-MB 435 cancerous breast cells. Perillyl alcohol at 0.5 mM inhibited normal breast cell migration while it failed to affect cancer cell migration. Finally, we examined the loss of prenylation of RhoA, a small GTPase protein involved in the formation of focal adhesions and stress fibers, and corresponding morphological changes following exposure to perillyl alcohol.


Alcohol; Cell; Characterization; Compound; Inhibiting; Migration; Perillyl

Controlled Subject

Cellular biology; Pharmacology; Oncology

File Format


File Size

2078.72 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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