I am interested in how signal transduction events effect the gene transcription both on a direct and epigenetic levels.
Extensive Research Description
Our laboratory group studies how a family of receptor signaling molecules function both in normal breast development and in breast cancer. My own research focuses on one member of this family, ErbB4. ErbB4 like the other EGFR family members can reside in the cell membrane and receive signals from the cell''s surroundings and pass those signal''s on through a cascade of other molecules. These cascades can tell a cell to become a breast cell, normal development or tell the cell to keep dividing as happens in cancer.ErbB4 is unusual in that when it receives a signal from its surroundings, part of it can be cleaved and go directly to the nucleus. There it can interact with other molecules that turn genes on and off. It is this interaction that I am studying. We don''t completely understand how this functions in normal development and we are don''t know how ErbB4 functions in breast or other cancers.