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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

April 5, 2019

Like racecars and geese, cancer cells draft their way to new tumor sites

Finding gives boost to fighting cancer through cell metabolism
April 4, 2019

Cancer’s SOS

Uncontrolled activation of RAS causes approximately a third of all tumors and helps cancerous cells evade anti-cancer drugs. Vanderbilt researchers have identified small molecules that target this pathway and further defined how these small molecule compounds work.
February 14, 2019

The yin and yang of cell signaling

Changes in enzymes involved in lysophospholipid signaling can activate a pathway implicated in development of cancer, a recent study suggests.

Seminars & Events

ST-Events

24 April 2019

ST-Events

24 April 2019