Scheme: Wolfson Research Merit Awards
Organisation: University of Manchester
Dates: Apr 2007-Mar 2012
Summary: The work in my lab looks at basic molecular mechanisms which underlie disease states such as cancer. As such we are focussing on gene regulation, a process by which an individual's DNA is activated to give rise to proteins and hence other building blocks that constitute our cells. This process is greatly perturbed in cancer. The work this year has focussed on several aspects of gene regulation control. The first is in the context of stem cells, where we are trying to understand how these cells differentiate ie are converted into other cell types (the basis to therapeutic cloning). The second project looks at how regulators of gene expression come together to make functional complexes. The final two projects look at mechanisms by which cells sense their environment and respond appropriately. In one case they are sensing when they are damaged and in another, conditions where they might want to grow and divide. We have identified important new proteins and pathway connections that control these processes. This work therefore provides the basis for our understanding of how normal cells function but also how they go wrong in cancer.