Cara B. Gonzales, D.D.S., Ph.D.
Department of Comprehensive Dentistry
Dr. Gonzales is a tenure-track assistant professor in the Department of Comprehensive Dentistry where she performs translational research in the field of oral cancer.
Her research focus is two-fold:
Characterization of novel mechanisms of oral cancer pain; and drug development to treat oral cancer and cancer related pain. In this regard, she has demonstrated that tumor secreted molecules activate pain receptors in the trigeminal system, and identified novel compounds that are currently being tested, in vitro and in vivo, for the ability to halt tumor progression and alleviate the tumor-related pain.
In addition to her research, she practices as a general dentist in the Faculty Practice Clinic. She also assists with screening potential patients for the dental school and overseeing students in the clinic. Her teaching duties allow her to work closely with the students in the classroom, the clinic and the laboratory.
- 2008 - Postdoctoral Training - Advanced Education in General Dentistry - UTHSCSA Dental School
- 2008 - Clinical Fellowship - Oral Cancer - VA
- 2006 - Postdoctoral Training - Cancer Biology - UTHSCSA Dental School
- 2003 - DDS - Dentistry - UTHSCSA
- 2003 - PhD - Cellular and Structural Biology - UTHSCSA
- 1992 - BS - Biology/Chemistry - St. Mary's University
- 7/2008 - Assistant Professor - University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Dental Diagnostic Science, San Antonio
Instruction & Training
- 10/2014 - Present, Biochemistry, The University of Texas Health Science Center
- 7/2014 - Present, Masters' Thesis Directed, UTHSCSA Dental School
- 1/2013 - Present, Individual Instruction, UTHSCSA
- 1/2012 - Present, Individual Instruction, UTHSCSA
- 5/2010 - Present, Interdisciplinary Women`s Health Selective 7113
- 3/2009 - Present, Oral Health Care for HIV-Infected Children for Pediatric Dentistry Residents, UTHSCSA Dental School
- 8/2005 - Present, Microscopic Anatomy, The University of Texas Health Science Center
Research & Grants
Aerodigestive Cancer, Animal Models, Cancer Prevention, Head & Neck Cancer, mTOR Pathway
Experimental and Developmental Therapeutics Program
Funding Agency Center for Innovated Drug Discovery Title Center for Innovative Drug Discovery Pilot Grant Status Active Period 1/2013 - Present Role Co-Investigator Grant Detail The goal of this project is to develop new compounds for the treatment of oral cancer and oral cancer pain. We have identified vanilloids as novel molecules to treat oral squamous cell carcinoma. Analogues of capsazepine are currently being evaluated for their cytotoxic effects in vitro and in mouse xenograft models. Thus far we have identified twelve novel molecules that effectively halt OSCC proliferation in vitro and in vivo.
Dasari, R., De Carvalho, A., Medellin, D.C., Middleton, K.N., Hague, F., Volmar, M.N.M., Frolova, L.V., Rossato, M.F., De La Chapa, J.J., Dybdal-hargreaves, N.F., Pillai, A., Mathieu, V., Rogelj, S., Gonzales, C.B., Calixto, J.B., Evidente, A., Gautier, M., Munirathinam, G., Glass, R., Burth, P., Pelly, S.C., van Otterlo, W.A.L., Kiss, R., and Kornienko, A. Wittig Derivatization of Sesquiterpenoid Polygodial Leads to Cytostatic Agents with Activity Against Drug Resistant Cancer Cells and Capable of Pyrrolylation of Primary Amines European Journal of medicinal chemistry 2015 Jan;. Gonzales CB, Kirma NB, De La Chapa J, Chen R, Henry MA, Luo S, Hargreaves KM. Vanilloids induce oral cancer apoptosis independent of TRPV1 interactions Oral Oncology 2014 May;50(5):437-447.
Gonzales, Cara B., Chen, Heping, De La Chapa, Jorge J., and Kirma, Nameer B. Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor and Anaplastic Lymphoma Kinase bypass signaling in oral squamous cell carcinoma in vivo 2015 Jan;. Nasreldin, R., De La Chapa, J.J., Kornienko, A., and Gonzales C.B. Polygodial Analogs? Anti-tumor Effects are Independent of TRPV1 Activation in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma 2015 Jan;.