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A headshot photo of Scott A Weed.

Scott A Weed, PhD

Associate Professor

Contact Information

PO Box 9300
Morgantown, WV 26506


  • Biochemistry
  • Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center

Graduate Training

  • Ph.D.: Yale University

Research Interests

The Weed laboratory focuses on the underlying molecular mechanisms that drive tumor cell invasion and metastasis, the key events in cancer progression responsible for lethality. Historically the laboratory focuses on cancers occurring in the oral cavity, collectively referred to as head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). HNSCC is associated with frequent alcohol and tobacco use, as well as infection with human papilloma virus (HPV).  HNSCC invasion damages the soft and bony tissues of the craniofacial region, severely compromising local organ structure and function. Invasive HNSCC also results in abundant regional lymph node metastasis that further compounds patient treatment. The overall goal of the lab is to identify signal relay systems that impact the tumor cell cytoskeleton responsible for initiating and driving tumor invasion, characterizing potential prognostic markers for invasion and identifying novel therapeutic anti-metastatic targeting strategies to aid in tumor containment and eradication.
All projects in the lab employ a wide range of techniques, from standard cell and molecular biological approaches to novel applications of advanced imaging techniques to engineered tissues and transgenic animal model systems. Doctoral students in the laboratory are affiliated with the Cancer Cell Biology graduate program and participate in the Cell Biology Training program as a means to expand exposure to different cell-based disciplines. Several undergraduate students work in the laboratory through the MBRCC Summer Fellowship program, the West Virginia IDeA network of Biomedical Research (WV-INBRE) and through the WVU Honors College. ENT residents participate in PGY-3 research projects through the Department of Otolaryngology research program. The laboratory also participates in several collaborative projects with other investigators through the Molecular Mechanisms of EMT and Metastasis and Allen Lung Cancer research programs.

Highlighted Projects
For more detailed information, please follow this link:

Project 1: "Cytoskeletal Signaling Pathways in Invadopodia Regulation"

Breaching the basement membrane is a key step in carcinoma cell invasion.

Project 2: "Animal Models of Oral Cancer Invasion"

Tissue-specific orthotopic models of HNSCC have been challenging to produce due to a number of factors, including shared tissue specificity with the epithelium in the integument and esophagus, as well as the unique difficulties of studying tumor progression within the craniofacial region in live animals.

Project 3: "In Vivo Imaging of Oral Cancer Progression"

Visualization of the initial steps of HNSCC invasion will greatly aid in understanding the shared and unique steps this particular tumor type undertakes during the metastatic cascade.

Project 4: "Evaluating the Impact of Appalachian Health Risk Factors on Oral Cancer"

Individuals residing in West Virginia and other Appalachian areas face many unique health challenges due to endemic and environmental conditions associated with socio-behavioral and geological parameters inherent to the region.

Recent Publications

Ten Most Recent:
High-frequency ultrasound imaging of mouse cervical lymph nodes.
Walk EL, McLaughlin SL, Weed SA.
J Vis Exp. 2015; (101): e52718.


Tumor and stromal-based contributions to head and neck squamous cell carcinoma invasion.
Markwell SM, Weed SA.
Cancers (Basel). 2015; 7(1): 382-406.


Use of high frequency ultrasound to monitor cervical lymph node alterations in mice.
Walk EL, McLaughlin SL, Coad JE, Weed SA.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(6): e100185.


SRChing for the substrates of Src.
Reynolds AB, Kanner SB, Bouton AH, Schaller MD, Weed SA, Flynn DC, Parsons JT.
Oncogene. 2014; 33(37): 4537-4547.

NEDD9 depletion leads to MMP14 inactivation by TIMP2 and prevents invasion and metastasis.
McLaughlin SL, Ice RJ, Rajulapati A, Kozyulina PY, Livengood RH, Kozyreva VK, Loskutov YV, Culp M, Weed SA, Ivanov AV, Pugacheva EN.
Mol Cancer Res. 2014; 12(1): 69-81.


NEDD9 regulates actin dynamics through cortactin deacetylation in an AURKA/HDAC6-dependent manner.
Kozyreva VK, McLaughlin SL, Livengood RH, Calkins RA, Kelley LC, Rajulapati A, Ice RJ, Smolkin MB, Weed SA, Pugacheva EN.
Mol Cancer Res. 2014; 12(5): 681-693.


Metastatic MTLn3 and non-metastatic MTC adenocarcinoma cells can be differentiated by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Novotny MJ, Bridge DR, Martin KH, Weed SA, Wysolmerski RB, Olson JC.
Biol Open. 2013; 2(9): 891-900.


Phosphorylation of the alternative mRNA splicing factor 45 (SPF45) by Clk1 regulates its splice site utilization, cell migration and invasion.
Liu Y, Conaway L, Rutherford BJ, Al-Ayoubi AM, Thompson BA, Zheng H, Weed SA, Eblen ST.
Nucleic Acids Res. 2013; 41(9): 4949-4962.


Ableson kinases negatively regulate invadopodia function and invasion in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma by inhibiting an HB-EGF autocrine loop.
Hayes KE, Walk EL, Ammer AG, Kelley LC, Martin KH, Weed SA.
Oncogene. 2013; 32(40): 4766-4777.


Effects of tobacco smoking and nicotine on cancer treatment.
Petros WP, Younis IR, Ford JN, Weed SA.
Pharmacotherapy. 2012; 32(10): 920-931.


Quantitative measurement of invadopodia-mediated extracellular matrix proteolysis in single and multicellular contexts.
Martin KH, Hayes KE, Walk EL, Ammer AG, Markwell SM, Weed SA.
J Vis Exp. 2012; (66): 4419.


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