|Grant ID: RR150033|
Recruitment of First-Time, Tenure-Track Faculty Members
University of California, San Diego
February 18, 2015
One major challenge in developing new therapies to treat cancer is figuring out how normal cells and cancer cells differ, so that treatment has fewer side effects.
Now a molecular biologist at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center is pursuing an enzyme, boosted in some cancers, that he thinks might provide an Achilles heel to attack them.
Vincent Tagliabracci was recruited in 2015 from the University of California, San Diego, where he was a postdoctoral fellow, to the UT Southwestern Department of Molecular Biology.
Tagliabracci focuses on a family of enzymes, called kinases, involved in cell signaling. The essential function of kinases has been understood for some time—they transfer a phosphate group from an energy molecule, called ATP, to another biomolecule, turning it on. These enzymes are often mutated in cancers and have received intense scrutiny for many decades.