The People of Tulane Cancer Center Research

Suzana SavkovicSuzana Savkovic, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
Tulane Cancer Center Contributing Member in the Signaling Program

Contact Information
Phone: 504-988-1409
Address: 1430 Tulane Ave., SL-79, New Orleans, LA 70112


Biographical Narrative
After graduating from the Molecular Biology program at the University of Belgrade in Yugoslavia, the Institute for Molecular Biology and Genetic Engineering accepted Dr. Savkovic into their graduate program. Soon after finishing her MS thesis, she accepted an invitation to be part of a team working on the Genome Project at the Argonne National Laboratory in the U.S. Although this project was exciting, her desire to continue with academic science transpired after meeting Dr. Gail Hecht at the University of Illinois in Chicago. After finishing her Ph.D., through which she sought to understand the mechanism of intestinal inflammation, and with the support of her mentor, Dr. Savkovic's post-graduate projects received Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America Fellowship and Career Development Awards. While her interests have expanded towards understanding how inflammation fosters tumor growth, which is often seen among patients with ulcerative colitis, she was searching for an institution with a strong cancer program. As a result, she landed her first independent position at the Research Institution of Evanston-Northwestern Healthsystem, which was part of Northwestern University and then later became associated with the University of Chicago. Her main research focus at the time was to study the role of the transcription factor FOXO3 in inflammation-mediated tumor growth, with a specific focus on the colonic epithelium and colon cancer. These projects were awarded the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America Senior Investigator Award and an NIH R01 grant. In 2013, Dr. Savkovic joined Tulane University and became a member of the Cancer Center in the hopes of further understanding the regulation of FOXO3-dependent metabolic pathways that provide fuel energy to support inflammation and tumor growth.


Selected Publications
Savkovic, SD. Decreased FOXO3 with advanced human coon cancer: implications of tumor suppressor function. Br J Cancer, 2013; 109: 297.

Qi W, Fitchev P, Cornwell M, Greenberg J, Cabe M, Weber CR, Roy H, Crawford S, Savkovic SD. FOXO3 Growth Inhibition of Colonic Cells is Dependent on Intraepithelial Lipid Droplet Density. J Biol Chem, 2013; 288(23): 16274.

Wali R, Kunte D’ De La Cruz M, Tiwari A, Brasky J, Weber CR, Gibson T, Patel A, Savkovic SD, Brockstein B, Roy HK. Topical Polyethylene Glycol as a Novel Chemopreventive Agent for Oral Cancer via Targeting of Epidermal Growth Factor Response. PLoS ONE, 2012 7(6): e38047.

Qi W, Joshi S, Weber CR, Wali R, Roy H, Savkovic SD. Polyethylene glycol (PEG) diminishes pathological effects of Citrobacter rodentium infection by blocking bacterial attachment to the colonic epithelia. Gut Microbes, 2011, 2(5): 267.

Qi W, Weber CR, Wasland K, Savkovic SD. Genistein inhibits proliferation of colon cancer cells by attenuating a negative effect of epidermal growth factor on tumor suppressor FOXO3 activity. BMC Cancer, 2011, 11(1): 219.

Qi W, Weber CR, Wasland K, Roy H, Wali R, Savkovic SD. Tumor suppressor FOXO3 mediates signals from the EGF receptor to regulate proliferation of colonic cells. Am J Physiology. 2011, 300(2): 72.

Snoeks L, Weber CR, Wasland K, Turner JR, Savkovic SD. Tumor suppressor Foxo3a regulates intestinal inflammation in vitro and in vivo. Lab Investigation. 2009; 89:1053.

Snoeks L, Weber CR, Turner JR, Bhattacharyya M, Wasland K, Savkovic SD. Tumor suppressor Foxo3a is involved in the regulation of LPS-induced IL-8 in intestinal HT-29 cells. Infect Immun, 2008; 76:4677.


1430 Tulane Ave, New Orleans, LA 70112