Research Summary

Work in the Nabi lab focuses on cell biology and its relation to disease, in particular cancer. The expression of cellular domains, ranging from cell polarity to organelle biogenesis to membrane microdomain organization, plays an important role in regulating cell function. Domain localization is critical to the regulation of receptor activation and our work has elaborated on the functional significance of various cellular domains in receptor function in cell motility.

Specific projects include:

  • The role of autocrine motility factor receptor (AMFR, also gp78), a cancer-associated receptor and E3 ubiquitin ligase in endoplasmic reticulum associated degradation (ERAD) and ER-mitochondria interaction.
  • Development of novel anti-cancer therapeutics based on the raft-dependent endocytosis of autocrine motility factor (AMF), the gp78/AMFR ligand.
  • The role of plasma membrane domains and their effectors, including galectin-3 and caveolin-1, in receptor signaling and focal adhesion dynamics in metastatic cancer cells.
  • Characterization of the proteome and transcriptome of tumor cell pseudopodia and the regulation of tumor cell migration and metastasis.


Intellectual Property

Completed Method of Determining Metastatic Potential of Tumor Cells. – 07/913, United States, District of Columbia
Filing Date: 1995-01-17


BSc Biochemistry (McGill University)
PhD Cancer Metastasis (Weizmann Institute of Science)


Comprehensive List
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Selected Publications:

  1. Min Fu, Pascal St. Pierre, Jay Shankar, Peter TC Wang, Bharat Joshi and Ivan R. Nabi (2012). Regulation of Mitophagy by the Gp78 E3 Ubiquitin Ligase. Mol. Biol. Cell Epub.
  2. Bharat Joshi, Michele Bastiani, Jay Shankar, Scott Strugnell, Cecile Boscher, Robert G. Parton and Ivan R. Nabi(2012). Phosphocaveolin-1 is a Mechanotransducer that Induces Caveola Biogenesis via Egr-1 Transcriptional Regulation. J. Cell Biol. 199, 425-435.
  3. Donatello S, Babina IS, Hazelwood LD, Hill AD, Nabi IR, Hopkins AM. (2012) Lipid Raft Association Restricts CD44-Ezrin Interaction and Promotion of Breast Cancer Cell Migration. Am J Pathol. (Epub)
  4. Maria Fairbank, Kun Huang, Alaa El-Husseini and Ivan R. Nabi (2012). RING Finger Palmitoylation of the Endoplasmic Reticulum Gp78 E3 Ubiquitin Ligase. FEBS Letters 586, 2488-93.
  5. C. Boscher, Y.Z. Zheng, R. Lakshminaraya, L. Johannes, J.W. Dennis, L.J. Foster and I.R. Nabi (2012) Galectin-3 Protein Regulates Mobility of N-cadherin and GM1 Ganglioside at Cell-Cell Junctions of Mammary Carcinoma Cells. J. Biol. Chem. 287(39):32940-52.
  6. Lin PJ, Tam YY, Hafez I, Sandhu A, Chen S, Ciufolini MA, Nabi IR, Cullis PR (2012). Influence of cationic lipid composition on uptake and intracellular processing of lipid nanoparticle formulations of siRNA. Nanomedicine. Epub.
  7. Jay Shankar*, Sam M. Wiseman*, Fanrui Meng, Katayoon Kasaian, Scott Strugnell, Alireza Mofid, Steven J.M. Jones, and Ivan R. Nabi (2012). Coordinate expression of galectin-3 and caveolin-1 in differentiated thyroid cancer. J. Pathol. 228, 56-66. *equal contribution
  8. Boscher C and Nabi IR. (2012). Caveolin-1: role in cell signaling. Adv Exp Med Biol. 729, 29-50.
  9. Pascal St. Pierre and Ivan R. Nabi (2012). The Gp78 ubiquitin ligase: probing endoplasmic reticulum complexity. Protoplasma 249 (Suppl 1), 11-8.
  10. Pascal St-Pierre, Thao Dang, Bharat Joshi and Ivan R. Nabi (2012). Endoplasmic Reticulum Domain Localization of Gp78-mediated Ubiquitin ligase activity. J. Cell Sci. 125, 1727-37.
  11. Zheng YZ, Boscher C, Inder KR, Fairbank MR, Loo DR, Hill MM, Nabi IR*, Foster LJ* (2011). Differential impact of caveolae and caveolin-1 scaffolds on the membrane raft proteome. Mol. Cell. Proteomics 10, M110.007146 *equal contribution.
  12. Cecile Boscher, James W. Dennis* and Ivan R. Nabi* (2011). Glyocosylation, galectins and cellular signaling. Current Opin Cell Biol 23, 383-92.
  13. Jay Shankar and Ivan R. Nabi (2011) RNA purification from tumor cell protrusions using porous polycarbonate filters. Methods Mol Biol. 714, 353-66.
  14. Zhang M, Lee SJ, An C, Xu JF, Joshi B, Nabi IR, Choi AM, Jin Y (2011) Caveolin-1 mediates Fas-BID signaling in hyperoxia-induced apoptosis. Free Radic Biol Med. 50, 1252-62.
  15. Min Fu, Lei Li, Tobias Albrecht, Liliana D. Kojic and Ivan R. Nabi (2011). Autocrine motility factor regulates ER stress and cell death through control of ER calcium release. Cell Death Diff. 18, 1057-70.
  16. Marie-Astrid Albert, Liliana D. Kojic, Ivan R. Nabi, and J. Daniel Dubreuil (2010). Cell type-dependent internalization of Escherichia coli STb enterotoxin. FEMS Immunol Med Microbiol. 61, 205-217.
  17. Patrick Lajoie and Ivan R. Nabi (2010). Lipid rafts, caveolae, and their endocytosis. Int. Rev. Cell Mol. Biol. 282C:135-163.
  18. Grund S, Olsson B, Jernås M, Jacobsson S, Swolin B, Nabi IR, Carlsson L, Wadenvik H (2010). The autocrine motility factor receptor is overexpressed on the surface of B cells in Binet C chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Med. Oncol. 28, 1542-1548.
  19. Jay Shankar, Anat Messenberg, Jacky Chan, T. Michael Underhill, Leonard Foster and Ivan R. Nabi (2010). Pseudopodial Actin Dynamics Control Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Metastatic Cancer Cells. Cancer Research 70, 3780-90.
  20. Connie G. Chiu, Scott Strugnell, Obi L. Griffith, Stephen Jones, Allan Gown, Bruce Walker, Ivan R. Nabi, Sam M. Wiseman (2010). Diagnostic Utility of Galectin-3 in Thyroid Cancer. Am. J. Pathol. 176, 2067-81.
  21. Bharat Joshi and Ivan R. Nabi (2010). A role for KAI1 in promotion of cell proliferation and mammary gland hyperplasia by the Gp78 ubiquitin ligase. J. Biol. Chem. (Epub before print – Jan 20, 2010).
  22. James W. Dennis, Michael Demetriou and Ivan R. Nabi (2009). Metabolism, cell surface organization and disease. Cell 139, 1229-41.
  23. James W. Dennis, Ken S. Lau, Michael Demetriou and Ivan R. Nabi (2009). Adaptive regulation at the cell surface by N-glycosylation. Traffic 10, 1569-78.
  24. Aruna D. Balgi, Bruno D. Fonseca, Elizabeth Donohue, Trevor C. F. Tsang, Patrick Lajoie, Christopher G. Proud, Ivan R. Nabi and Michel Roberge (2009). Screen for Chemical Modulators of Autophagy Reveals Novel Therapeutic Inhibitors of mTORC1 Signaling. PLOS One 4, e7124.
  25. Maria Fairbank, Pascal St-Pierre, Ivan R. Nabi. (2009). The complex biology of autocrine motility factor/phosphoglucose isomerase (AMF/PGI) and its receptor, the gp78/AMFR E3 ubiquitin ligase. Mol. Biosyst. 5, 793-801.
  26. Ivan R. Nabi (2009). Cavin fever: Regulating caveolae. Nature Cell Biology 11, 793-801.
  27. Jacky G. Goetz*, Patrick Lajoie*, James W. Dennis, Ivan R. Nabi (2009). Lattices, rafts and scaffolds: Domain regulation of receptor signaling at the plasma membrane. J. Cell Biol. 185(3):381-5. *equal contribution
  28. P Lajoie, LD Kojic, S Nim, L Li, JW Dennis, IR Nabi (2009). Caveolin-1 regulation of the raft-dependent endocytosis of cholera toxin b. J Cell Molec Med Epub (Mar 6 2009).
  29. Liliana D. Kojic, Sam M. Wiseman, Fariba Ghaidi, Bharat Joshi, Hinyu Nedev, H. Uri Saragovi, Ivan R. Nabi (2008). Raft-dependent endocytosis of autocrine motility factor/phosphoglucose isomerase: a potential drug delivery route for tumor cells. PLoS ONE 3(10):e3597.
  30. Heather C. Stuart, Zongjian Jia, Anat Messenberg, Bharat Joshi, T. Michael Underhill, Hakima Moukhles, Ivan R. Nabi (2008). Localized Rho activation regulates RNA dynamics and compartmentalization in tumor cell protrusions. J. Biol Chem 283, 34785-95.
  31. Bharat Joshi, Scott Strugnell, Jacky G. Goetz, Liliana D. Kojic, Michael E. Cox, Obi L. Griffith, Steven J. Jones, Sher-Ping Leung, Hamid Masoudi, Samuel Leung, Sam M. Wiseman and Ivan R. Nabi (2008). Phospho-caveolin-1 regulates Rho/ROCK-dependent focal adhesion dynamics and tumor cell migration. Cancer Research. 68(20):8210-20.
  32. Jacky G. Goetz*, Patrick Lajoie*, Sam M. Wiseman, Ivan R. Nabi. (2008). Caveolin-1 in tumor progression: the good, the bad and the ugly. Cancer Metastasis Rev. 2008 May 28. [Epub ahead of print].
  33. Sam M. Wiseman, Obi L. Griffith, A. Melck, Hamid Masoudi, Alan Gown, Ivan R. Nabi, Steven J. Jones. (2008). Evaluation of type 1 growth factor receptor family expression in benign and malignant thyroid lesions. Am J Surg. 195, 667-73.
  34. Jacky G. Goetz, Bharat Joshi, Patrick Lajoie, Scott S. Strugnell, Trevor Scudamore, Liliana D. Kojic, Ivan R. Nabi (2008). Concerted regulation of focal adhesion dynamics by galectin-3 and tyrosine phosphorylated caveolin-1. J. Cell Biol. 180, 1261-1275. (highlighted in Nature’s Functional Glycomics Gateway, Faculty of 1000).
  35. Connie G. Chiu, Pascal St. Pierre, Ivan R. Nabi, and Sam M. Wiseman (2008). Autocrine motility factor receptor : a clinical review. Expert Rev. Anticancer Therapy 8, 207-217.
  36. Patrick Lajoie, Emily Partridge, Ginette Guay, Jacky G. Goetz, Judy Pawling, Annick Lagana, Bharat Joshi, James W. Dennis and Ivan R. Nabi (2007). Plasma membrane domain organization regulates EGFR signaling in tumor cells. J. Cell Biol. 179, 341-356 (selected for cover image and highlighted in JCB’s In this issue, Nature’s Functional Glycomics Gateway and Faculty of 1000).
  37. Jacky G. Goetz*, Hélène Genty*, Pascal St-Pierre*, Thao Dang,Remy Sauvé, Wayne Vogl, And Ivan R. Nabi (2007). Reversible interactions between smooth endoplasmic reticulum domains and mitochondria are regulated by physiological cytosolic calcium levels. J. Cell Sci. 120, 3553-3564 (Selected For Cover Image) *equal contribution.
  38. Liliana D. Kojic, Bharat Joshi, Patrick Lajoie, Phuong U. Le, Michael Cox, Dmitry Turbin, Sam Wiseman and Ivan R. Nabi (2007). Phosphoinositide-3-kinase-, raft-dependent endocytosis of autocrine motility factor selectively targets p-Akt-positive, caveolin-1-negative breast carcinoma cells. J. Biol. Chem. 282, 29305-29313.
  39. Patrick Lajoie and Ivan R. Nabi (2007). Regulation of raft-dependent endocytosis. J. Cell Molec. Med. 11, 644-653.
  40. Annick Lagana*, Jacky G. Goetz*, Pam Cheung, Avraham Raz, James W. Dennis, and Ivan R. Nabi (2006). Mgat5-modified N-glycans and galectin-3 regulate tumor cell remodeling of the fibronectin matrix. Mol. Cell. Biol. 26, 3181-93 (selected for cover image Nov, 2006).
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