Available Positions

Exploring the physiological function of signaling proteins that are activated by receptors of the TNF/NGF family.

Rotation: 
1st
2nd
3rd
Area: 
Life Sciences
Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Transgenic and conditional-knockout mouse models are applied to gain better knowledge of the physiological and pathophysiological function of the following signaling proteins that were discovered in our laboratory: (a) Caspase-8, a cysteine protease that we have initially found to serve as the main proximal signaling protein in the initiation of death induction by the receptors (the extrinsic cell-death pathway), yet has more recently found also to serve various non-apoptotic roles. We are mainly interested in further exploring its function in the cross-talk between the epidermal and dermal layers of the skin, in the liver, and in the insulin-producing beta Langerhans cells. (b) NIK, a protein kinase (a MAP3K) that signals for activation of transcription factors of the NF kappa B family, specifically by receptors that, through activation of NF kappa B, control adaptive immunity and lymph-node generation. (c) CYLD, a deubiquitination enzyme that acts specifically to reverse K63-linked ubiquitination and thus serves to arrest initiation of several signaling cascades. (d) IREN, a member of the sorting-nexins family that mediates trafficking of signaling proteins activated by the receptors of the TNF/NGF family.

Exploring the tumor-suppressor role of caspase-8, particularly in lung cancer.

Rotation: 
1st
2nd
3rd
Area: 
Life Sciences
Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Caspase-8, a cysteine protease discovered in our laboratory, is the main proximal signaling enzyme in the activation of the extrinsic cell-death pathway by receptors of the TNF/NGF family. In certain cells it also participates in the regulation of cell growth, differentiation and survival. A number of different human tumors, including small cell lung carcinoma, neuroblastoma, hepatocellular carcinoma, and others, are frequently deficient of caspase-8. This deficiency occurs by several different mechanisms, indicating that it is not a consequence of the oncogenic transformation but is rather causal to it. Applying molecular approaches, cell-culture and animal models we explore the mechanisms accounting for the tumor suppressor role of caspase-8 and the functional consequences of its deletion in cancer cells.