Ghada Kalil Kchour

Associate professor
Life & Earth Sciences department - Section I - Hadath
Speciality: Biology
Specific Speciality: Medical Immunology

Teaching 7 Taught Courses
(2014-2015) BioA 438 - Stem cells and differentiation

M1 Applied Animal Science

(2014-2015) BioA 439 - Stem cells and differentiation Lab

M1 Applied Animal Science

(2014-2015) Biol 100 - Cellular Biology and General Histology (animal and plant)

BS Earth and life sciences

(2014-2015) BioA 421 - Project

M1 Applied Animal Science

(2014-2015) Biol 113 - Genetics, human anatomiy and plant reproduction

BS Earth and life sciences

(2014-2015) Biol 240 - Cell Biology Lab (Histology, Embryology, Reproduction, and genetics)

BS Earth and life sciences

(2014-2015) Biol 349 - Immunology Lab

BS Earth and life sciences

2005 - 2009: PhD

Mashhad university of medical sciences
clinical immunology

2002 - 2005: master

Mashhad university of medical sciences
Medical Immunology

1998 - 2002:

Mashhad university of medical sciences
Laboratory Sciences

Publications 8 publications
Ghada Kchour, Sa Rahim Rezaee, Reza Farid, Akram Ghantous,Houshang Rafatpana, Mahdi Tarhini, Mohamad-Mehdi Kooshyar,Hiba El Hajj, Fadwa Berry, Mohamad Mortada, Roudaina Nasser,Abbas Shirdel, Zeina Dassouki, Mohamad Ezzedine, Hossein Rahimi, Ardeshir Ghavamzadeh, Hugues de Thé, Olivier Hermine, Mahmoud Mahmoudi, Ali Bazarbachi The combination of arsenic, interferon-alpha, and zidovudine restores an "immunocompetent-like" cytokine expression profile in patients with adult T-cell leukemia lymphoma. Retrovirology 2013

Background: HTLV-I associated adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) carries a dismal prognosis due to chemo-resistance and immuno-compromised micro-environment. The combination of zidovudine and interferon-alpha (IFN) significantly improved survival in ATL. Promising results were reported by adding arsenic trioxide to zidovudine and IFN. Results: Here we assessed Th1/Th2/Treg cytokine gene expression profiles in 16 ATL patients before and 30 days after treatment with arsenic/IFN/zidovudine, in comparison with HTLV-I healthy carriers and sero-negative blood donors. ATL patients at diagnosis displayed a Treg/Th2 cytokine profile with significantly elevated transcript levels of Foxp3, interleukin-10 (IL-10), and IL-4 and had a reduced Th1 profile evidenced by decreased transcript levels of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) and IL-2. Most patients (15/16) responded, with CD4+CD25+ cells significantly decreasing after therapy, paralleled by decreases in Foxp3 transcript. Importantly, arsenic/IFN/zidovudine therapy sharply diminished IL-10 transcript and serum levels concomittant with decrease in IL-4 and increases in IFN-γ and IL-2 mRNA, whether or not values were adjusted to the percentage of CD4+CD25+ cells. Conclusions: The observed shift from a Treg/Th2 phenotype before treatment toward a Th1 phenotype after treatment with arsenic/IFN/zidovudine may play an important role in restoring an immuno-competent micro-environment, which enhances the eradication of ATL cells and the prevention of opportunistic infections.

Hajj HE, Nasr R, Kfoury Y, Dassouki Z, Nasser R, Kchour G, Hermine O, de Thé H, Bazarbachi A. Animal models on HTLV-1 and related viruses: what did we learn? Front Microbiol 2012

Retroviruses are associated with a wide variety of diseases, including immunological, neurological disorders, and different forms of cancer. Among retroviruses, Oncovirinae regroup according to their genetic structure and sequence, several related viruses such as human T-cell lymphotropic viruses types 1 and 2 (HTLV-1 and HTLV-2), simian T cell lymphotropic viruses types 1 and 2 (STLV-1 and STLV-2), and bovine leukemia virus (BLV). As in many diseases, animal models provide a useful tool for the studies of pathogenesis, treatment, and prevention. In the current review, an overview on different animal models used in the study of these viruses will be provided. A specific attention will be given to the HTLV-1 virus which is the causative agent of adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) but also of a number of inflammatory diseases regrouping the HTLV-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP), infective dermatitis and some lung inflammatory diseases. Among these models, rabbits, monkeys but also rats provide an excellent in vivo tool for early HTLV-1 viral infection and transmission as well as the induced host immune response against the virus. But ideally, mice remain the most efficient method of studying human afflictions. Genetically altered mice including both transgenic and knockout mice, offer important models to test the role of specific viral and host genes in the development of HTLV-1-associated leukemia. The development of different strains of immunodeficient mice strains (SCID, NOD, and NOG SCID mice) provide a useful and rapid tool of humanized and xenografted mice models, to test new drugs and targeted therapy against HTLV-1-associated leukemia, to identify leukemia stem cells candidates but also to study the innate immunity mediated by the virus. All together, these animal models have revolutionized the biology of retroviruses, their manipulation of host genes and more importantly the potential ways to either prevent their infection or to treat their associated diseases.

Kchour G, Tarhini M, Kooshyar MM, El Hajj H, Wattel E, Mahmoudi M, Hatoum H, Rahimi H, Maleki M, Rafatpanah H, Rezaee SA, Yazdi MT, Shirdel A, de Thé H, Hermine O, Farid R, Bazarbachi A. Phase 2 study of the efficacy and safety of the combination of arsenic trioxide, interferon alpha, and zidovudine in newly diagnosed chronic adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL). Blood 2009

Adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) is resistant to chemotherapy and carries a dismal prognosis particularly for the acute and lymphoma subtypes. Promising results were obtained with the combination of zidovudine and interferon-alpha. Chronic ATL has a relatively better outcome, but poor long-term survival is noted when patients are managed with a watchful-waiting policy or with chemotherapy. In ATL cell lines, arsenic trioxide shuts off constitutive NF-kappaB activation and potentiates interferon-alpha apoptotic effects through proteasomal degradation of Tax. Clinically, arsenic/interferon therapy exhibits some efficacy in refractory aggressive ATL patients. These results prompted us to investigate the efficacy and safety of the combination of arsenic, interferon-alpha, and zidovudine in 10 newly diagnosed chronic ATL patients. An impressive 100% response rate was observed including 7 complete remissions, 2 complete remissions but with more than 5% circulating atypical lymphocytes, and 1 partial response. Responses were rapid and no relapse was noted. Side effects were moderate and mostly hematologic. In conclusion, treatment of chronic ATL with arsenic, interferon-alpha, and zidovudine is feasible and exhibits an impressive response rate with moderate toxicity. Long-term follow up will clarify whether this will translate to disease cure. Overall, these clinical results strengthen the concept of oncogene-targeted cancer therapy.

Tarhini M, Kchour G, Zanjani DS, Rafatpanah H, Otrock ZK, Bazarbachi A, Farid R. Declining tendency of human T-cell leukaemia virus type I carrier rates among blood donors in Mashhad, Iran. Pathology 2009

Tarhini M, Kooshyar MM, Farzadnia M, Maleki M, Kchour G, Tabatabaee A, Otrock ZK, Bazarbachi A. Adult T cell leukemia-lymphoma with testicular involvement. Ann Hematol 2009

Katebi M, Sharifi N, Tarhini M, Otrock ZK, Bazarbachi A, Kchour G. Frequency of Epstein-Barr virus expression in various histological subtypes of Hodgkin's lymphoma. Histopathology 2008

Kchour G, Tarhini M, Sharifi N, Farid R, Khooei AR, Shirdel A, Afshari JT, Sadeghian A, Otrock Z, Hermine O, El-Sabban M, Bazarbachi A. Increased microvessel density in involved organs from patients with HTLV-I associated adult T cell leukemia lymphoma. Leuk Lymphoma. 2008

Adult T-cell leukemia-lymphoma (ATLL) is a rapidly progressive lymphoproliferative disorder secondary to infection with the human T cell lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I). The role of angiogenesis in the development and prognosis of many hematologic malignancies is established. We have previously shown that ATLL derived cells secrete high levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and basic fibroblast growth factor (b-FGF), induce endothelial tube formation in vitro and establish functional gap junction-mediated communication with endothelial cells. We also demonstrated that plasma from ATLL and tropical spastic paraparesis/HTLV-I associated myelopathy patients exhibit very high levels of VEGF and b-FGF. Recently, we showed that treatment with the combination of zidovudine and interferon alpha reduced both HTLV-I proviral load and importantly VEGF plasma levels suggesting a potential anti-angiogenic effect of this therapy. In this report, we evaluated microvessel density (MVD) in involved organs from 20 patients with ATLL, as compared to normal organs from matched controls. We show evidence of significantly increased MVD in all tested involved organs from ATLL patients, suggesting that angiogenesis plays an important role in the development or organ invasion of ATLL, and could represent a potentially interesting target for anti-angiogenic therapy of ATLL.

Kchour G, Makhoul NJ, Mahmoudi M, Kooshyar MM, Shirdel A, Rastin M, Rafatpanah H, Tarhini M, Zalloua PA, Hermine O, Farid R, Bazarbachi A. Zidovudine and interferon-alpha treatment induces a high response rate and reduces HTLV-1 proviral load and VEGF plasma levels in patients with adult T-cell leukemia from North East Iran. Leuk Lymphoma. 2007

Human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) associated adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATLL) is endemic in southern Japan, the Caribbean, intertropical Africa, and Brazil. Recently north east Iran, particularly the region of Mashhad, has been recognized as a new endemic region. ATLL is an aggressive T-cell lymphoproliferative disorder. Patients with ATLL have high plasma levels of VEGF that induce angiogenesis. Prognosis of ATLL remains poor because of immunosuppression and intrinsic resistance to chemotherapy. Important advances in the treatment of ATLL were reported with the combination of zidovudine (AZT) and interferon-alpha. We investigated the effect of AZT/IFN treatment on vascular endothelium growth factor (VEGF) plasma levels and HTLV-I proviral load in ATLL patients from the region of Mashhad. We confirmed that AZT/IFN treatment induces a high response rate and prolonged survival with minimal side effects. We also confirmed that VEGF plasma levels and HTLV-I proviral load are higher in ATLL patients than in asymptomatic carriers. We finally showed that AZT/IFN treatment reduced both HTLV-I proviral load and importantly VEGF plasma levels, suggesting a potential antiangiogenic effect of this therapy. These results provide further evidence for the efficacy and the mechanism of action of AZT/IFN therapy for ATLL in a developing country.


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