Jessica L. Moore

Departmet of Biology
Associate Professor

Phone: 828-227-3664
FAX: 828-227-7066
Office Address: 130 Natural Sciences Building


  • Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin 1994

Courses Taught:

  • BIOL 240:  Introduction to Genetics

Research Interests
The modern theory of cancer is that it begins with changes to common cellular components resulting in the accumulation of mutations that lead to the overproliferation and inappropriate growth known as a tumor. Research in my lab is currently focused on two main areas of cancer genetics using the small freshwater zebrafish, Danio rerio, as a model organism for human cancer. One project underway is to map and characterize several novel mutations in zebrafish that cause genomic instability, the gin mutations (Moore et al. 2006). The effects of these mutations can be studied from the early embryonic stages of development to the formation of tumors in adult zebrafish. Adults that carry only one mutant copy of the genomic instability genes seem to have a dramatically increased susceptibility to cancer by developing a variety of tumors, with similar pathology to that seen in humans! A second area of research uses zebrafish as a model system for testicular cancer. Abnormal testicular masses are extremely frequent in zebrafish males. We are looking at patterns of differential gene expression and oncogene activity in zebrafish testicular cancer to better understand human testicular cancer.



  • Moore, J.L., Rush, L.R., Breneman, C., Mohideen, M.P.K.and Cheng, K.C. (2006) Zebrafish genomic instability mutants and cancer susceptibility.  Genetics 174: 585-600 (cover article).
  • Lamason, R.L., Mohideen, M.A., Mest, J.R., Wong, A.C., Jurynec, M.J., Mao, X., Humphreville, V.R., Humbert, J.E., Sinha, S., Moore, J. L., Jagadeeswaran, P., Zhao, W., Ning, G., Makalowska, I., McKeigue, P.M., O’Donnell, D., Kittles, R., Parra, E.J., Mangini, N.J., Grunwald, D.J., Shriver, M.D., Canfield, V.A., and Cheng, K. C. (2005)  SLC24A5, a putative cation exchanger, affects pigmentation in zebrafish and humans.  Science 310: 1782-1786 (cover article).
  • Moore, J.L., Gestl, E. E. and Cheng, K.C.  (2004)  Mosaic eyes, genomic instability mutants and cancer susceptibility. In “Zebrafish—Cellular and Developmental Biology”. H. Detrich, M. Westerfield, L. Zon, eds. Methods in Cell Biology 76: 553-566.
  • Mohideen, M-A, P.K, Beckwith, L.B., Tsao-Wu, G.S., Moore, J.L., Wong, A.C.C., Chinoy, M.R. and  Cheng, K.C. (2003)  Histology-based screen for zebrafish mutants with abnormal cell differentiation.  Developmental Dynamics 28: 414-423.
  • Beckwith, L.G., Moore, J.L., Tsao-Wu, G.S., Harshbarger, J.C., and Cheng, K.C. (2000)  Ethylnitrosourea induces neoplasia in zebrafish (Danio rerio).  Laboratory Investigation 80: 379-385.




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