Fariba Behbod, Pharm.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

Pharm.D., University of Texas at Austin, 1991
Ph.D., University of Texas Health Science Center/University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 2001
Postdoctoral, Baylor College of Medicine, 2002-2006

The goal of our research is to study the molecular and cellular mechanisms of human ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) progression to invasive breast cancer (IBC).  We have established active collaborations with the Breast Cancer Prevention group at KUMC and KU-Wichita for obtaining primary human DCIS biopsy and surgical samples.  Our collaboration with KU clinicians has allowed development of the first human DCIS xenograft model by intraductal injection of primary DCIS cells obtained from patient samples.  This model that we refer to as MIND (mouse-intraductal) closely mimics human DCIS and allows the study of epithelial/stromal interactions that orchestrate the process of DCIS to IBC transition.  The active projects in the lab include the effects of hormonal stimulation on cancer stem cell self-renewal and transition to invasiveness and the role of MicroRNAs in DCIS to IBC transition. 

Selected Publications

Elsarraj HS, Stecklein SR, Valdez K, Behbod F. Emerging Functions of microRNA-146a/b in Development and Breast Cancer : MicroRNA-146a/b in Development and Breast Cancer. J Mammary Gland Biol Neoplasia. 2012 Feb 19. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID: 22350993. PMC journal - in process.

F Behbod & J.M. Rosen. (Editorial): Mammary Gland Development and Breast Cancer; Connecting the dots by non-coding RNAs.  J Mammary Gland Biology and Neoplasia.  2012 March 9 [Epub ahead of print]. In press. PMID: 22402939. PMC journal - in process.

Valdez, K.E., Fan, F., Smith, W., Allred, D.C., Medina, D. and Behbod, F. Human primary ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) subtype-specific pathology is preserved in a mouse intraductal (MIND) xenograft model. J Pathol. 2011 Dec 225:565-573

Kittrell FS, Carletti MZ, Kerbawy S, Heestand J, Xian W, Zhang M, LaMarca HL, Sonnenberg A, Rosen JM, Medina D, Behbod F.  Prospective isolation and characterization of committed and multipotent progenitors from immortalized mouse mammary epithelial cells with morphogenic potential.  Breast Cancer research, April 2011, 13:R41. PMC3219204.

Pal A, Valdez KE, Carletti MZ, Behbod F. Targeting the perpetrator: breast cancer stem cell therapeutics. Curr Drug Targets. 2010 Sep;11(9):1147-56.

Bussard KM, Boulanger CA, Kittrell FS, Behbod F, Medina D, Smith GH. Immortalized, premalignant epithelial cell populations contain long-lived, label-retaining cells that asymmetrically divide and retain their template DNA. Breast Cancer Res. 2010 Oct 21;12(5):R86.

LaMarca HL, Visbal AP, Creighton CJ, Liu H, Zhang Y, Behbod F, Rosen JM. CCAAT/enhancer binding protein beta regulates stem cell activity and specifies luminal cell fate in the mammary gland. Stem Cells. 2010 Mar 31;28(3):535-44.

Zhang M, Behbod F, Atkinson RL, Landis MD, Kittrell F, Edwards D, Medina D, Tsimelzon A, Hilsenbeck S, Green JE, Michalowska AM, Rosen JM. Identification of tumor-initiating cells in a p53-null mouse model of breast cancer. Cancer Res. 2008 Jun 15;68(12):4674-82.

Behbod F, Kittrell FS, LaMarca H, Edwards D, Kerbawy S, Heestand JC, Young E, Mukhopadhyay P, Yeh HW, Allred DC, Hu M, Polyak K, Rosen JM, Medina D. An intraductal human-in-mouse transplantation model mimics the subtypes of ductal carcinoma in situ. Breast Cancer Res. 2009;11(5):R66.

Chen MS, Woodward WA, Behbod F, Peddibhotla S, Alfaro MP, Buchholz TA, Rosen JM. Wnt/beta-catenin mediates radiation resistance of Sca1+ progenitors in an immortalized mammary gland cell line. J Cell Sci. 2007 Feb 1;120(Pt 3):468-77.

Woodward WA, Chen MS, Behbod F, Alfaro MP, Buchholz TA, Rosen JM. WNT/beta-catenin mediates radiation resistance of mouse mammary progenitor cells.Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Jan 9;104(2):618-23.

Behbod F, Xian W, Shaw CA, Hilsenbeck SG, Tsimelzon A, Rosen JM. Transcriptional profiling of mammary gland side population cells. Stem Cells 2006 Apr; 24(4): 1065-74. PMID: 16282442.

Woodward WA, Chen MS, Behbod F, Rosen JM. On mammary stem cells. J Cell Sci. 2005 Aug 15;118(Pt 16):3585-94.

Last modified: Jun 29, 2017

Fariba Behbod, PharmD, Ph.D.


Fariba Behbod, Pharm.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor


Behbod Laboratory