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Search Program Faculty/Research

Peter Houghton, Ph.D.

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Dr. Peter Houghton is the Director of the Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute (GCCRI), and holder of the Greehey Distinguished Chair for the Children’s Cancer Research Institute. 

His studies are aimed at understanding mechanisms of cancer initiation in children and using this information to develop more effective and less toxic treatments that will increase the cure rate and improve quality of life for cancer survivors. He has been consistently funded through NIH for over 30 years, has directed NIH program grants for over 25 years, and served as chair for both the Experimental Therapeutics and Drug Discovery Molecular Pharmacology NIH Study Sections. He has served on several committees within the Children’s Oncology Group, and was elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2011.

His current projects include:

1. Signaling pathways in childhood sarcoma

2. The Pediatric Preclinical Consortium (PPTC)

3. Low-Grade Glioma – Brain tumors

Selected Publications: 

Singh M, Leasure JM, Chronowski C, Geier B, Bondra K, Duan W, Hensley LA, Villalona-Calero M, Li N, Vergis AM, Kurmasheva RT, Shen C, Woods G, Sebastian N, Fabian D, Kaplon R, Hammond S, Palanichamy K, Chakravarti A, Houghton PJFANCD2 is a potential therapeutic target and biomarker in alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma harboring the PAX3-FOXO1 fusion gene. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-13-0556. Epub 2014 Apr 30.PMID: 24787670

Cam M, Bid HK, Xiao L, Zambetti GP, Houghton PJ, Cam H. J. p53/TAp63 and AKT regulate mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) signaling through two independent parallel pathways in the presence of DNA damage. Biol Chem. 2014 Feb 14;289(7):4083-94. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M113.530303. Epub 2013 Dec 23.PMID: 24366874

Bid HK, Roberts RD, Cam M, Audino A, Kurmasheva RT, Lin J, Houghton PJ, Cam H. ΔNp63 promotes pediatric neuroblastoma and osteosarcoma by regulating tumor angiogenesis. Cancer Res. 2014 Jan 1;74(1):320-9. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-13-0894. Epub 2013 Oct 23.PMID: 24154873

Balkhi MY, Iwenofu OH, Bakkar N, Ladner KJ, Chandler DS, Houghton PJ, London CA, Kraybill W, Perrotti D, Croce CM, Keller C, Guttridge DC. miR-29 acts as a decoy in sarcomas to protect the tumor suppressor A20 mRNA from degradation by HuR.Sci Signal. 2013 Jul 30;6(286):ra63. doi: 10.1126/scisignal.2004177. Erratum in: Sci Signal. 2013 Sep 10;6(292):er6. Balkhi, Mumtaz Y [corrected to Balkhi, M Y]. PMID: 23901138

Shen C, Houghton PJThe mTOR pathway negatively controls ATM by up-regulating miRNAs. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Jul 16;110(29):11869-74. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1220898110. Epub 2013 Jul 1.PMID: 23818585

Director, Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute

Professor, Molecular Medicine

Greehey Distinguished Chair for the Children’s Cancer Research Institute


Ph.D., Biochemistry/Pharmacology, University of London, 1976



Phone: (210) 562-9056

Graduate Students

Andra Bates 
Roxanne Khoogar