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Laboratory of Protein Dynamics and Signaling

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Overview

The Laboratory of Protein Dynamics and Signaling (LPDS) investigates fundamental cellular processes that are important for cell proliferation and differentiation, embryonic development, apoptosis, tumorigenesis and metastasis.

The Kuehn group analyzes dynamic post-translational modifications affecting developmental proteins and pathways that regulate cell commitment and fate. These include methylation and demethylation of histones epigenetically controlling transcriptional status and modification with small ubiquitin-like modifier (Sumo), or sumoylation. A particular area of interest is how developmental signaling pathways are integrated with epigenetic regulation to specify and maintain specific cell fates.

The Loncarek group studies fundamentals of centrosome biology and cellular processes associated with their activity. Centrosomes are malleable organelles whose number, size, function and molecular composition respond to cell cycle dynamics, differentiation status, cell type. Despite an apparent interplay between the centrosome and cell cycles, very little is known about how the two cycles synchronize. The Loncarek group aims to understand molecular mechanisms that couple the two cycles in normal and pathological conditions, combining biochemical methods with high-end light and electron microscopy.

The Weissman group has a primary interest in the cellular function of components of the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) and their cellular function under normal and pathological conditions including cancer, metastasis and in apoptosis. Areas of focus include structure-function relationships for RING finger ubiquitin ligases and the role of the ubiquitin system in organelles including the endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria.

The LPDS is located on the NCI Frederick Campus and has close ties to a number of other Laboratories here, as well as to Laboratories and Branches on the Bethesda Campus. The NCI-Frederick Campus offers state-of-the-art facilities and a highly interactive environment for trainees.

This page was last updated on 10/17/2013.