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University of Hawaii Cancer Center

Cancer Biology Program

University of Hawai'i at Manoa
701 ILALO Street, Room 444 
Honolulu, Hawai'i  96813

Office: (808) 564-5843 Lab: (808) 440-5236

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joeOur mission is to elucidate the underlying mechanisms that control cancer cell metastasis. We are particularly focused on the role of RSK2 and PEA-15 in complex with ERK MAP kinase in cancer cell invasion and migration. More recently our work has extended to the function of RasGRP1 in skin cancer. In collaboration with Chemists at UH Manoa and in Brooklyn College we are developing new drugs to target cancer based on our basic research findings. Currently we are investigating the dysregulation of cell signalling in skin cancer, renal cancers, neuroblastoma and glioblastoma.

Funding for our research has been provided by The National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense, the Hawaii Community Foundation and the Friends of the Cancer Research Center among others. Here you can get acquainted with our work through our publications and statement of research interests.  In addition, take a moment to note who is in the lab and some of our collaborators. Our lab is on the beautiful island of Oahu and you can find directions to us here. Thanks for visiting!

Sequencing Core


UH Map
Lab Photos
Lab Calendar

Joe W. Ramos, Ph.D.
Professor & Deputy Director

UH Cancer Center
B.H. and Alice C. Beams Endowed Professor in Cancer Research, John A. Burns School of Medicine


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See our new paper on RSK2 activation of RhoA GTPases via phsophorylation of the GEF LARG in PNAS!

Dr. Ramos was named B.H. and Alice C. Beams Endowed Professor in Cancer Research.

RSK2 drives brain tumor invasion and targetting RSK2 along with Chemotherapy is more effective than chemotherapy alone in Oncotarget

See a press release on work of the Ramos Lab here.

Our latest work with Dr. Maria Contel examining the activity of a Titanocene-Gold compound in kidney cancer Eur J Med Chem

Behold! The Cancer Center Building! Take a photo tour of the Center Here!
See Florian and Joe's review of RSK function in metastasis in Cancer Research. See new work on PEA-15 and RSK2 listed at NLM's Pubmed. Learn more about PEA-15 at our UCSD-Nature Molecule page.


"The first principle (of scientific integrity) is that you must not fool yourself-and you are the easiest person to fool..."- Richard P. Feynman, The Pleasure of Finding Things Out.


Web page created and maintained by Joe W. Ramos

Revised: January 2019

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