School of Medicine

Wayne State University School of Medicine
Department of Pathology Bioactive Lipids Research Program
Dr. Kenneth V. Honn - Director

About Us

Mission
The mission of the Bioactive Lipids, Cancer, Inflammation & Disease Progression program is to pursue opportunities to solve the causes of cancer, not just deal with the results from cancer and metastasis, through laboratory research and clinical investigations. Led by the internationally renowned cancer researcher, Dr. Kenneth V. Honn, and other respected scientists under his guidance, the Program's research group is continually advancing techniques and gaining crucial knowledge to aid in the fight against various forms of cancer.

About Dr. Honn
Dr. Ken Honn is a Distinguished Professor at Wayne State University within the School of Medicine’s Department of Pathology, as well as being the Director of the Bioactive Lipids, Cancer, Inflammation & Disease Progression program and an adjunct Professor in the Department of Chemistry. In addition to being the author of over 200 published works, Honn also heads the Cancer Biology Division in the Gershenson Radiation Oncology Center at Harper Hospital and is a member of the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute.  Additionally, he is a member of Board of Directors of the Eicosanoid Research Founation and The Fund for Cancer Research.  And is the chairman of the International Conference on Bioactive Lipids in Cancer, Inflammation and Related Diseases.

As a 30-year dedicated cancer researcher, Dr. Honn’s personal aim is to eventually eradicate prostate cancer, but he understands that long-term goal is far from being achieved. Among men in the United States, prostate cancer is the most common form of cancer, aside from skin cancer, and is the second leading cause, just behind lung cancer, of cancer-related death for men. Every three minutes another man is diagnosed with prostate cancer. Every 18 minutes a man dies from prostate cancer.

Innovative Research
Though the journey may be lengthy in solving the complex riddle to what causes cancer, Dr. Honn’s innovative discoveries and methodologies have already been adapted by scientists the world over. Honn’s unique defiance of established dogma in the world of cancer research has allowed him and his group to discover several previously unimaginable traits about cancer cells and their relationship to eicosanoids, a large and diverse group of lipid molecules, including several that are active in preventing the spread of cancer.

Our Approach
The Bioactive Lipids Program laboratory research employs a multidisciplinary approach, utilizing molecular, biochemical, and cell biology methodologies. The group focuses on two major areas as they relate to tumor progression and the spread of cancer throughout the body. The first involves the examination of the role played by bioactive lipids in processes such as cancer cell motility and invasion, and the second focuses on adhesion receptors, in particular integrins, and their role in metastasis.

Clinical Trials and Patents
Research efforts in Dr. Honn’s laboratories have been directly responsible for six clinical trials, and members of his lab hold in aggregate 17 US patents, seven of which include generation of novel chemotherapeutic/radiation sensitizing compounds. Due to Dr. Honn’s translational research, a drug development program has identified a candidate lipoxygenase inhibitor, which is being readied for clinical trial.

The Bioactive Lipids Research group will continue to build on these successes, pushing cancer research beyond the expected to make new discoveries and new tools that can be used in the struggle against prostate and other various cancers.