Frank A. Simmen, Ph.D.

Frank A. Simmen, Ph.D.

Ph.D., University of Hawaii (Biochemistry)
Postdoctoral Fellow, Baylor College of Medicine (Cell Biology)

Office: (501) 686-8128;




Other Affiliations:

Faculty Member, The Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute
Co-Director, M2 GI and Nutrition Module, College of Medicine

Research interests:

My laboratory has worked in the areas of molecular endocrinology, molecular nutrition, gut development, and animal models of disease.  Work in the laboratory over the last decade and continuing through the present has focused on 1) molecular mechanisms of action of select dietary factors and obesity in colon cancer 2) molecular physiology of Malic Enzyme 1 (ME1), and 3) characterization of Krüppel-Like Factors (KLFs) in normo- and patho-physiology.  Current projects use a combination of in vitro and in vivo approaches and mouse models.  While research has been a focus of my career, I am an active contributor to graduate student and medical student education and mentoring.

Representative Recent Publications:

Fernandes LM, Al-Dwairi A, Simmen RCM, Marji M, Brown DM, Jewell SW, Simmen FA. Malic Enzyme 1 (ME1) is pro-oncogenic in ApcMin/+  mice. Sci Rep. 2018 Sep 24; 8 (1):14268.doi; 10.1038/s41598-018-32532-w.

Blossom SJ, Fernandes L, Bai S, Khare S, Gokulan K, Yuan Y, Dewall M, Simmen FA, Gilbert KM. Opposing Actions of Developmental Trichloroethylene and High-Fat diet Coexposure on Markers of Lipogenesis and Inflammation in Autoimmune-Prone Mice. Toxicology Sci. 2018 Jul 1; 164 (1):313-327. PMID: 29669109

Brown DM, Lee, HC, Liu S, Quick CM, Fernandes, LM, Simmen FA, Tsai SJ, Simmen RC. Notch-1 Signaling Activation and Progesterone Receptor Expression in Ectopic Lesions of Women With Endometriosis.  Journal of Endocrine Society. 2018 July; Vol. 2,(7):765-778. Researchgate

Yu S, Wu X, Ferguson M, Simmen RC, Cleves MA, Simmen FA, Fang N. Diets containing shiitake mushroom reduce serum lipids and serum lipophilic antioxidant capacity in rats. J Nutr. 2016 Dec;146(12):2491-2496.

Pabona JM, Zhang D, Ginsburg DS, Simmen FA, Simmen RC. Prolonged pregnancy in women is associated with attenuated myometrial expression of progesterone receptor co-regulator Krüppel-like Factor 9. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2015 Jan;100(1):166-74. PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4283014.

Montales MT, Simmen RC, Ferreira ES, Neves VA, Simmen FA. Metformin and soybean-derived bioactive molecules attenuate the expansion of stem cell-like epithelial subpopulation and confer apoptotic sensitivity in human colon cancer cells. Genes Nutr. 2015 Nov;10(6):49. PMC4623856/.

Brown AR, Simmen RC, Raj VR, Van TT, MacLeod SL, Simmen FA. Krüppel-like factor 9 (KLF9) prevents colorectal cancer through inhibition of interferon-related signaling. Carcinogenesis. 2015 Sep;36(9):946-55. PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4573661.

Al-Dwairi A, Brown AR, Pabona JM, Van TH, Hamdan H, Mercado CP, Quick CM, Wight PA, Simmen RC, Simmen FA. Enhanced gastrointestinal expression of cytosolic malic enzyme (ME1) induces intestinal and liver lipogenic gene expression and intestinal cell proliferation in mice. PLoS One. 2014;9(11):e113058. PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4234650.

Al-Dwairi A, Pabona JM, Simmen RC, Simmen FA. Cytosolic malic enzyme 1 (ME1) mediates high fat diet-induced adiposity, endocrine profile, and gastrointestinal tract proliferation-associated biomarkers in male mice. PLoS One. 2012;7(10):e46716. PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3464285.


Link to Dr. Frank A. Simmen at Pub-Med:

Link to Dr. Frank A. Simmen at ResearchGate:

Member-Editorial Board of Scientific Reports

Member-Editorial Board of Cancers