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Signal Transduction and Chemical Biology Research Program

The pathways that send chemical signals from the cell surface to the nucleus are major targets of genotype-driven therapies for cancer. The Signal Transduction and Chemical Biology Research Program aims to better understand how changes in tumor cells alter these signaling networks, and to identify—or create—molecules that target these pathways as potential new therapies for cancer.

RESEARCH THEMES

The Signal Transduction and Chemical Biology Research Program is organized into four groups with common research interests:

Identifying how changes in key cell cycle proteins help tumor cells escape the typical response of cell death and lead to uncontrollable growth

Finding and developing compounds that inhibit key drivers of cancer formation

Combining ‘big data’ experimental approaches to understand the changes in signaling networks that drive cancer formation

Determining how cancer-initiating stem cells continuously renew and seed distant sites to promote metastasis, and understanding the role of these cells in resistance to chemotherapies

Meet the Program Members

The Signal Transduction and Chemical Biology program, led by Ian Macara, PhD, and Stephen Fesik, PhD, is an active group of over 40 basic, translational, and clinical scientists whose goal is to understand how signaling networks control cell proliferation and function, to identify drug leads, and to develop new cancer therapeutics.

Featured Publications

Program News

November 12, 2018

Evading cell death

A recent study reveals how cellular structures called 'stress granules' help cells evade death. The findings may lead to new strategies for improving the efficacy of cancer therapy.
September 27, 2018

Cancer Moonshot award to help map tumor progression

A trans-institutional team of researchers at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Vanderbilt University has received an $11 million Cancer Moonshot grant to build a single-cell resolution atlas to map out the routes that benign colonic polyps take to progress to colorectal cancer.

Seminars & Events

Calendar
Jan
24
VICC Seminar Series: Patricia Ernst, PhD

24 January 2019

Calendar
Mar
14
VICC Seminar Series: Erik Andersen, PhD

14 March 2019

Calendar
Apr
04
Back to the future: investigating cell state changes in cancer from a developmental perspective

04 April 2019