One focus in our laboratory is to understand the biochemical basis for the regulation and mechanism of the MAP kinases. We are using state-of-the-art enzyme kinetic techniques, in conjunction with structural methods, to address these questions. Another goal of our work is to develop small molecule and peptide inhibitors of MAPK pathways that can be used to elucidate their role in cancer progression. More recently, we have begun to develop new chemical-biology tools, which we hope will be used to interrogate MAPK pathways in more detail than is presently possible. With currently available methods it is not possible to quantify the activity of MAPKs at specific locations in cells, or to instantly switch them on or off and ask what they are doing at a specific point in time. However, using chemical approaches, we are developing fluorescent sensors of MAP kinase activities and new light-regulated reagents that will allow us to ask such questions in the future.
Affiliated Research Units
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