Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Lisa Porter


Biological sciences



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


Spy1A is an essential cell cycle protein, functioning similar to a cyclin, activating the cyclin dependent kinase (CDK) family and enhancing cell growth processes. This body of research confirms that Spy1A protein is tightly regulated during mammary gland development. Utilization of a murine mammary fat pad transplant model demonstrates that ectopic Spy1A expression increases the rate of cell proliferation, leading to precocious mammary gland development and acceleration of breast cell tumorigenesis. Additionally, Spy1A protein was present in the invasive breast cancer cell line, MDA-MB-231, and in human female brain cancers metastasized from primary breast tumors. It was also shown that Spy1A interacts with Axin, elucidating a potential role of Spy1A in the Wnt signaling pathway. Knowledge provided from this research contributes to a more comprehensive understanding of cellular mechanisms underlying the development and progression of breast cancer, highlighting Spy1A as a potential biomarker for diagnosis of invasive breast cancers.