Our laboratory works at the intersections of biochemistry, structural biology, chemical biology, and chemistry to understand and manipulate the molecular basis of cancer. A major effort is devoted to structure-based design of compounds that perturb cancer biology and therefore have potential to become cancer therapies.
Activating Ras mutations are among the most common known genetic causes of cancer. But despite decades of effort, there are no therapies that directly target oncogenic forms of K-Ras. We are pioneering a new approach involving the use of covalent chemistry which allows us to directly target the active site of K-Ras.
Kinase activity is often deregulated in cancer, allowing cells to grow and survive when physiology says they should stop. Some of the most spectacular advances in targeted cancer therapy in recent years involve kinase inhibitors, but there is much more to be done. We work closely with other labs to develop new kinase inhibitors for cancer therapy.
Several additional classes of targets are also under study.