Richard Ludueña, PhD

Professor Emeritus (Retired, UT Health San Antonio)


Ph.D., Stanford University 1973
Post Doctoral: Stanford University 1973-1976


Dr. Luduena’s research focuses on the isotypes of tubulin, specifically on elucidating their biological functions in normal and cancerous cells and exploring their possible utility as targets for novel chemotherapeutic approaches. Research in the laboratory applies to many kinds of cancer with a special emphasis in breast cancer. Recent work has explored the beta-III isotype of tubulin. Beta-III is a promising target since it is common in cancers, particularly more advanced cases, and relatively rare in normal tissues. Dr. Luduena’s group of collaborators has found 1) beta-III is widespread in more aggressive breast cancers; 2) beta-III is resistant to superoxide anion; and 3) beta-III, when mixed with other isotypes, conveys this resistance to them. In addition, Dr. Luduena and his colleagues are engaged in designing drugs with higher specificity toward beta-III. Some of these drugs have been synthesized and tested in culture; a few of these seem to be four orders of magnitude more effective against tumor cells than against normal cells. In a related project, the beta-V isotype is also being studied to determine its distribution in normal and cancerous tissues.