Jaime <span>L.</span> Matta, PhD
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Jaime L. Matta, PhD



    • Chemical Biology and Molecular Medicine Program

Education & Training

    • University of California, UCLA, PhD - Biology
    • University of California, UCLA, DSc - Biology
    • University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, MS - Biological Oceanography
    • University of California, Santa Barbara, Postdoctoral Fellow

My main research expertise is in the area of toxicology. Over the years, I have worked in three main areas within that large interdisciplinary field of toxicology. During the last seven years, I have been primarily focused in the field of clinical cancer research studying the role of DNA repair as a risk factor for skin and breast cancer. The overall goals of my laboratory are to: a) define the role of DNA repair in skin and breast cancer susceptibility and resistance to chemotherapeutic agents b) to identify DNA repair genes that are associated with significant changes in risk to skin and breast cancer, c) study mechanisms involved in the regulation of DNA repair gene expression by activated Stat3 signaling in melanoma skin cancer, d) determine how genetic and environmental factors influence the risk of skin and breast cancer at the populational level.


  • Matta J, Ortiz C, Encarnación J, Dutil J, Suárez E. Variability in DNA Repair Capacity Levels among Molecular Breast Cancer Subtypes: Triple Negative Breast Cancer Shows Lowest Repair. Int J Mol Sci. 2017 Jul;18(7). Pubmedid: 28704967. Pmcid: PMC5535995.
  • Encarnación J, Ortiz C, Vergne R, Vargas W, Coppola D, Matta JL. High DRC Levels Are Associated with Let-7b Overexpression in Women with Breast Cancer. Int J Mol Sci. 2016 Jun;17(6). Pubmedid: 27271599. Pmcid: PMC4926399.
  • Ortiz C, Morales L, Sastre M, Haskins WE, Matta J. Cytotoxicity and Genotoxicity Assessment of Sandalwood Essential Oil in Human Breast Cell Lines MCF-7 and MCF-10A. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016 Jun;2016:3696232. Pubmedid: 27293457. Pmcid: PMC4879231.
  • Matta J, Morales L, Ortiz C, Adams D, Vargas W, Casbas P, Dutil J, Echenique M, Suárez E. Estrogen Receptor Expression Is Associated with DNA Repair Capacity in Breast Cancer. PLoS One. 2016;11(3):e0152422. Pubmedid: 27032101. Pmcid: PMC4816515.
  • Dutil J, Golubeva VA, Pacheco-Torres AL, Diaz-Zabala HJ, Matta JL, Monteiro AN. The spectrum of BRCA1 and BRCA2 alleles in Latin America and the Caribbean: a clinical perspective. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2015 Dec;154(3):441-453. Pubmedid: 26564481. Pmcid: PMC4661195.
  • Wells KJ, Lima DS, Meade CD, Muñoz-Antonia T, Scarinci I, McGuire A, Gwede CK, Pledger WJ, Partridge E, Lipscomb J, Matthews R, Matta J, Flores I, Weiner R, Turner T, Miele L, Wiese TE, Fouad M, Moreno CS, Lacey M, Christie DW, Price-Haywood EG, Quinn GP, Coppola D, Sodeke SO, Green BL, Lichtveld MY. Assessing needs and assets for building a regional network infrastructure to reduce cancer related health disparities. Eval Program Plann. 2014 Jun;44:14-25. Pubmedid: 24486917. Pmcid: PMC4360072.
  • Vera JL, Rullán J, Santos N, Jiménez J, Rivera J, Santana A, Briggs J, Rheingold AL, Matta J, Meléndez E. Functionalized ferrocenes: The role of the para substituent on the phenoxy pendant group. J Organomet Chem. 2014 Jan;749:204-214. Pubmedid: 27453588. Pmcid: PMC4957819.
  • Pérez-Mayoral J, Pacheco-Torres AL, Morales L, Acosta-Rodríguez H, Matta JL, Dutil J. Genetic polymorphisms in RAD23B and XPC modulate DNA repair capacity and breast cancer risk in Puerto Rican women. Mol Carcinogen. 2013 Nov;52 Suppl 1:E127-E138. Pubmedid: 23776089. Pmcid: PMC4104768.
  • Vergne Y, Matta J, Morales L, Vargas W, Alvarez-Garriga C, Bayona M. Breast Cancer and DNA Repair Capacity: Association With Use of Multivitamin and Calcium Supplements. Integr Med (Encinitas). 2013 Jun;12(3):38-46. Pubmedid: 24817834. Pmcid: PMC4012419.
  • Matta J, Morales L, Dutil J, Bayona M, Alvarez C, Suarez E. Differential expression of DNA repair genes in Hispanic women with breast cancer. Mol Cancer Biol. 2013 Feb;1(1):54. Pubmedid: 25309843. Pmcid: PMC4189824.
  • Matta JL, Flores I, Morales LM, Monteiro J, Alvarez-Garriga C, Bayona M. Women with endometriosis have a higher DNA repair capacity and diminished breast cancer risk. Mol Cancer Biol. 2013 Dec;1(1). Pubmedid: 25473592. Pmcid: PMC4248303.
  • Matta J, Echenique M, Negron E, Morales L, Vargas W, Gaetan FS, Lizardi ER, Torres A, Rosado JO, Bolaños G, Cruz JG, Laboy J, Barnes R, Medina SS, Romero A, Martinez R, Dutil J, Suarez E, Alvarez-Garriga C, Bayona M. The association of DNA Repair with breast cancer risk in women. A comparative observational study. BMC Cancer. 2012 Oct;12:490. Pubmedid: 23088658. Pmcid: PMC3572436.
  • Dutil J, Colon-Colon JL, Matta JL, Sutphen R, Echenique M. Identification of the prevalent BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations in the female population of Puerto Rico. Cancer Genet. 2012 May;205(5):242-248. Pubmedid: 22682623. Pmcid: PMC3655764.
  • Vera J, Gao LM, Santana A, Matta J, Meléndez E. Vectorized ferrocenes with estrogens and vitamin D2: synthesis, cytotoxic activity and docking studies. Dalton Trans. 2011 Oct;40(37):9557-9565. Pubmedid: 21850331. Pmcid: PMC4461443.
  • Kao WH, Riker AI, Kushwaha DS, Ng K, Enkemann SA, Jove R, Buettner R, Zinn PO, Sánchez NP, Villa JL, D'Andrea AD, Sánchez JL, Kennedy RD, Chen CC, Matta JL. Upregulation of Fanconi anemia DNA repair genes in melanoma compared with non-melanoma skin cancer. J Invest Dermatol. 2011 Oct;131(10):2139-2142. Pubmedid: 21697891. Pmcid: PMC3174338.
  • Flores I, Muñoz-Antonia T, Matta J, García M, Fenstermacher D, Gutierrez S, Seijo E, Torres-Ruiz J, Pledger WJ, Coppola D. The Establishment of the First Cancer Tissue Biobank at a Hispanic-Serving Institution: A National Cancer Institute-Funded Initiative between Moffitt Cancer Center in Florida and the Ponce School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Puerto Rico. Biopreserv Biobank. 2011 Dec;9(4):363-371. Pubmedid: 24836632. Pmcid: PMC5206688.
  • Porrata-Doria T, Matta JL, Acevedo SF. Apolipoprotein E Allelic Frequency Altered in Women with Early-onset Breast Cancer. Breast Cancer (Auckl). 2010 May;4:43-48. Pubmedid: 20697532. Pmcid: PMC2914274.
  • Gao LM, Vera JL, Matta J, Meléndez E. Synthesis and cytotoxicity studies of steroid-functionalized titanocenes as potential anticancer drugs: sex steroids as potential vectors for titanocenes. J Biol Inorg Chem. 2010 Aug;15(6):851-859. Pubmedid: 20349254. Pmcid: PMC4461440.
  • Matta JL, Rodriguez G, Villa J, Ruiz A. The role of DNA repair capacity in melanoma skin cancer risk in a population chronically exposed to high levels of sunlight. Ochsner J. 2010;10(2):75-82. Pubmedid: 21603361. Pmcid: PMC3096198.
  • Feliciano I, Matta J, Meléndez E. Water-soluble molybdenocene complexes with both proliferative and antiproliferative effects on cancer cell lines and their binding interactions with human serum albumin. J Biol Inorg Chem. 2009 Sep;14(7):1109-1117. Pubmedid: 19536567. Pmcid: PMC2819120.
  • Gao LM, Matta J, Rheingold AL, Meléndez E. Synthesis, Structure and Biological Activity of Amide-Functionalized Titanocenyls: Improving their Cytotoxic Properties. J Organomet Chem. 2009 Dec;694(26):4134-4139. Pubmedid: 20177431. Pmcid: PMC2824910.
  • Ramos JM, Ruiz A, Colen R, Lopez ID, Grossman L, Matta JL. DNA repair and breast carcinoma susceptibility in women. Cancer. 2004 Apr;100(7):1352-1357. Pubmedid: 15042667.
  • Matta JL, Villa JL, Ramos JM, Sanchez J, Chompré G, Ruiz A, Grossman L. DNA repair and nonmelanoma skin cancer in Puerto Rican populations. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2003 Sep;49(3):433-439. Pubmedid: 12963906.
  • González MJ, Mora EM, Miranda-Massari JR, Matta J, Riordan HD, Riordan NH. Inhibition of human breast carcinoma cell proliferation by ascorbate and copper. P R Health Sci J. 2002 Mar;21(1):21-23. Pubmedid: 12013676.
  • Matta J, Navas J, Milad M, Manger R, Hupka A, Frazer T. A pilot study for the detection of acute ciguatera intoxication in human blood. J Toxicol Clin Toxicol. 2002;40(1):49-57. Pubmedid: 11990204.
  • Olivero OA, Larramendy M, Soloneski S, Menck CF, Matta J, Folle GA, Zamorano-Ponce E, Spivak G. Impact of EMS outreach: successful developments in Latin America. Environ Mol Mutagen. 51(8-9):763-773. Pubmedid: 20213840. Pmcid: PMC4066450.