Todd Stukenberg, PhD, a professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, was awarded a $3.3 million grant to study mechanisms of mitotic regulation. The Stukenberg Lab studies the mechanisms used by cells to segregate chromosomes to understand how tumor cells hijack mitosis. The lab recently found that many breast cancers dysregulate the important mitotic regulator Aurora B kinase. The new grant will enable the lab to study how Aurora kinase regulates the dramatic changes to chromosomes and the cytoskeleton that are required to allow cells to divide. There are a number of chemical inhibitors of Aurora kinases in clinical trials as cancer chemotherapeutics and the studies will provide important insight into effective use of these therapeutics and generate new targets to specifically kill cancer cells.
Read more about the Stukenberg Lab and research.