Teresa Rose-Hellekant, PhD, DVM

Associate Professor, Medical School, Duluth Campus

Teresa Rose-Hellekant

Contact Info


Office Phone 218-726-6621

Fax 218-726-7906

Office Address:
Department of Biomedical Sciences
341 SMed
1035 University Drive
Duluth, MN 55812

Associate Professor, Medical School, Duluth Campus

Director, Animal Services, Medical School, Duluth Campus

Department of Biomedical Sciences

PhD, Veterinary Science: Reproductive Physiology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, 1995

DVM, Veterinary Medicine, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, 1988

MS, Veterinary Science, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, 1987

BS, Meat & Animal Science, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, 1982

Postdoctoral Fellow in Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Pathobiological Sciences, 1995-2000

Postdoctoral Fellow in Teaching, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Animal Health and Biomedical Sciences, 1995


Awards & Recognition

University of Minnesota

  • Biomedical Sciences Departmental Award for Team Science, 2014
  • Promotion to Associate Professor with Tenure, 2011
  • International Travel Award, International Programs Office, 2008

External Sources

  • National Institutes of Health Career Development Award K01, NCRR SERCA Award (1 of 16 awarded annually), 1998-2003
  • National Research Service Award, Environmental Toxicology Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1997-1998
  • Environmental Health Sciences Breast Cancer Focus Group Leader, UW-Madison, 1999-2002
  • Dissertator Travel Award, 1994
  • Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study, Travel Award, 1989

Professional Associations

  • Member, European Association for Cancer Research, 2011-present
  • Member, Endocrine Society, 2009-present
  • Member, University of Minnesota Masonic Cancer Center, Cell Signaling Program Cancer Prevention Group, 2004-present
  • Member, American Association for Cancer Research 1998-present


Research Summary/Interests

The overall goal of my research program is to study the natural history of mammary cancer development, especially as related to the influences of estrogens, so as to discover means to prevent cancer development. Within this general scheme, current research investigations include: 

  1. the identification of molecular and cellular targets of tamoxifen chemoprevention, 
  2. the role of developmental genes in breast carcinogenesis, 
  3. anti-cancer gene therapy and the utility of mesenchymal stem cells as delivery vehicles and 
  4. mouse modeling of cancer for studying novel therapeutic and preventive drugs. To explore many of these questions we utilize cancer cell lines and mouse models including genetically engineered and cancer cell transplant models for which my laboratory has developed. 

We also evaluate human archival breast biopsies and primary cell isolates from murine mammary and soon will be carrying out this procedure in surgically removed human breast tissues. 

The tools we utilize for molecular analysis include global gene expression analysis and quantitative RT-PCR, flow cytometry and immunocytochemistry for protein analysis in cells and immunohistochemistry to localize proteins in tissue sections. 

Most of our work is in collaboration with cell biologists, chemists, geneticists, pathologists and statisticians. 

Seed money has been generously provided by the University of Minnesota, the Masonic Cancer Center and Whiteside Institute of Clinical Research. We also have received several grants from the National Cancer Institute of the NIH.


See full list of publications at: PubMed

Sardao, V., Rose-Hellekant, T.A, Perkins E., Greene A.L., and Holy J., Measuring reciprocal regulation of mesenchymal stem cell and tumor cell motility in two and three dimensions in vitro. 2010 In Columbus, F. editor. Cytoskeleton: Cell Movement, Cytokinesis and Organelles Organization. Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers, Inc.

Rose-Hellekant TA, Skildum, AJ, Zhdankin O, Greene AL, Kundel K, Kundel DW, (2009) Short-term prophylactic tamoxifen reduces incidence of antiestrogen-resistant/estrogen receptor-positive/progesterone receptor-negative mammary tumors. Cancer Prevention Research 2(5):496-502.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2752205/

Zhang H., Skildum A. Stromquist E., Rose-Hellekant T.A., Chang L.C. Bioactive Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers from the Marine Sponge Dysidea sp. 10. Journal of Natural Products 2008 71(2):262-4.

Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Schroeder, M., Brockman, J.L., Zhdankin, O., Bolstad, R., Chen, K.S., Gould, M., Schuler, L.A. and Sandgren, E.P. (2007). Estrogen receptor positive mammary tumorigenesis in TGF? transgenic mice progresses with progesterone receptor loss. Oncogene 26(36):5238-46http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2587149

Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Wentworth, K.A., Nikolai, S.E., and Sandgren, E.P. Mammary carcinogenesis is preceded by altered epithelial cell turnover in TGF? and c-myc transgenic mice. (2006) American Journal of Pathology 169(5):1821-32. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1780202

Arendt, L.M., Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Sandgren, E.P. and Schuler, L.A. (2006): Prolactin potentiates transforming growth factor alpha induction of mammary neoplasia in transgenic mice. Amer. J. Path. 68:1365-74. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1606572/

Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Arendt L, Schroeder M.D., Gilchrist K.W., Sandgren E.P., and Schuler, L.A. (2003) Prolactin induces ER? positive and ER? negative mammary cancer in transgenic mice. Oncogene 22:4664-4674. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1630768/

Rose-Hellekant T.A., Gilchrist K., Sandgren E. P. (2002): Strain background alters mammary gland lesion phenotype in TGFa transgenic mice. Amer J Pathology 161:1439-1447. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1867309/

Schroeder M.D., Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Sandgren, E.P., Schuler, L.A. (2001): Dysregulation of mammary stats 1,3 and 5 and PRL receptors by overexpression of TGF?. Mol Cell Endocrinology 175: 173-183.

Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Sandgren, E.P. (2000): Transforming growth factor alpha- and c-myc-induced mammary carcinogenesis in transgenic mice. Oncogene 19:1092-1096.

Rose-Hellekant, T.A., Libersky-Williamson, E.A. and Bavister, B.D. (1998): Energy substrates and amino acids provided during in vitro maturation of bovine oocytes alter acquisition of developmental competence.Zygote 6:285-294.

Rose-Hellekant, T.A. and Bavister, B.D. (1996): Precocious oocyte maturation is induced by an inhibitor of cAMP-dependent protein kinase in the intact golden hamster. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 44:250-255.

Rose-Hellekant, T.A. and Bavister, B.D. (1996): Roles of protein kinase A and C in spontaneous maturation and in forskolin or 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine maintained meiotic arrest of bovine oocytes. Mol. Reprod Dev.44:241-249.

Fischer, B., Rose-Hellekant T.A., Sheffield, L.G., Bertics, P.J. and Bavister, B.D. (1994): Binding of epidermal growth factor and transforming growth factor?? in mammalian preimplantation embryos. Theriogenology 41: 879-887.

Bavister, B.D., Rose-Hellekant, T.A. and Pinyopummintr, T. (1992): Development of in vitro matured/in vitro fertilized bovine embryos in defined culture media. Theriogenology 37:127-146.

Rose, T.A. and Bavister, B.D. (1992): Effect of oocyte maturation medium on in vitro development of in vitro fertilized bovine embryos. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 31:72-77.


Academic Interests and Focus

I teach aspects of endocrinology and pharmacology in Medical Endocrinology 6762 to medical students and endocrinology to graduate and undergraduates in the courses, Physiology of Organ Systems I 5601 and General Physiology 3011. I am a graduate student trainer in the Integrated Biosciences Program and am guest teaching in the Cancer Biology section of the Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Program at the University of Coimbra, Portugal.


  • CRRABII,  Problem based learning, facilitator 
  • Medical Physiology
  • Physiology of Organ Systems 1
  • Human Physiology


Board Certifications

Licensed in Veterinary Medicine in the State of Wisconsin,

Registration No 3246-050