Please note: The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio will now be called "UT Health San Antonio."

Search Program Faculty/Research

Dean Bacich, Ph.D.

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Dr. Bacich's research focuses on prostate cancer, specifically the prostate cancer antigen, Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen (PSMA), which is a unique folate hydrolase that is highly expressed in prostate cancer. 

The folate hydrolase activity spurred his interest in the effect of folate on prostate cancer initiation and progression. This area of research is particularly relevant, given the requirement for folate for cancer cell division as well as it being required for genomic stability and methylation reactions, thus it can have positive or negative consequences depending the stage of the cancer, and yet patient intake of folate can be easily modified by dietary modification. 

This in turn has led to his interest in how folate levels modulate FASN expression and regulation, and the potential interaction of folate with FASN’s nuclear localization.

Selected Publications

Yao, V., Berkman, CE, Choi JK, O’Keefe, DS* and Bacich, DJ* (2010). Expression of Prostate-Specific Membrane Antigen (PSMA), increases cell folate uptake and proliferation and suggests a novel role for PSMA in the uptake of the non-polyglutamated folate, folic acid. * these authors contributed equally to this manuscript. Prostate 70(3) 305-16. PMID 19830782. 

Yao, V., Parwani, A., Maier, C., Heston, WDW., Bacich, DJ (2008) Moderate Expression of Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen, a Tissue Differentiation Antigen and Folate Hydrolase, Facilitates Prostate Carcinogenesis. Cancer Research 68(21):9070-7. PMCID 133339 

Yao, V and Bacich DJ. (2006) Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen (PSMA) expression gives prostate cancer cells a growth advantage in a physiologically relevant folate environment in vitro. Prostate 66:867-875 

Bacich D.J., Wozniak, K., Lu, M., O’Keefe, D. S. , Callizot, N., Heston, W.D.W. and Slusher, B.S. (2005) Mice lacking Glutamate Carboxypeptidase II are protected from peripheral neuropathy and ischemic brain injury. J Neurochem. 2005 Oct;95(2):314-23. 

Gregor PD, Wolchok JD, Turaga V, Latouche JB, Sadelain M, Bacich D, Heston WD, Houghton AN, Scher HI (2005) Induction of autoantibodies to syngeneic prostate-specific membrane antigen by xenogeneic vaccination. Int. J Cancer 116:415-21 

O'Keefe DS, Bacich DJ, Heston WD. (2004) Comparative analysis of prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) versus a prostate-specific membrane antigen-like gene. Prostate 58:200-10 

Balaji KC, Rao PS, Smith DJ, Louis S, Smith LM, Sherman S, Bacich DJ, O’Keefe D. (2004) Microarray analysis of differential gene expression in androgen independent prostate cancer using a metastatic human prostate cancer cell line model. Urologic Oncology 22:313-320. 

Bacich, DJ, Ramadam, E, O’Keefe, DS, Bukhari, N, Wegorzewska, E, Ojeifo, O, Wrenn, CC, Bzdega, T, Wroblewska, B, Heston, WDW, Neale JH. (2002) Deletion of the Glutamate Carboxypeptidase II Gene in Mice reveals a second enzyme activity that hydrolyzes N-Acetylaspartylglutamate. J. Neurochem. 83:20-29 

Bacich DJ, Pinto JT, Tong W, Heston WDW. (2001) Cloning, Expression, Genomic Localization and Enzymatic activities of the murine homologue of Prostate-Specific Membrane Antigen / NAALADase / Folh1. Mam. Genome 12 117-123

Associate Professor of Urology


Ph.D., Medicine, University of Adelaide, 1997

B.Sc., Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Adelaide, 1990

B.Sc., Biochemistry/Genetics, University of Adelaide, 1989



Phone: (210) 562-4099