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John Kuriyan

Signaling proteins mechanism, evolution and structure and ATP-dependent motors in DNA replication

John Kuriyan, Biochemistry Dean, School of Medicine Basic Sciences

The Kuriyan Lab research concerns the workings of the enzymes and molecular switches that carry out cellular signal transduction and DNA replication. The laboratory determines the three-dimensional structures of proteins, as well as biochemical, biophysical and cell biological analyses to elucidate how they work. Breakthroughs from the lab have included determining the mechanisms by which several tyrosine kinases, including Src family kinases, the Abl kinase and the epidermal growth factor receptor, switch on and off. These tyrosine kinases are enzymes that are very important targets of drug development in cancer.

Fundamental insights obtained in the Kuriyan Lab have been instrumental in understanding how drugs, such as Gleevec (imatinib) and Scemblix (asciminib), both developed by Novartis, are effective in shutting down the leukemia-causing form of the Abl tyrosine kinase.

The Kuriyan Lab has also provided a fundamental understanding of the structure and regulation of several other signaling proteins, including STATs, the Ras activator SOS, and calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase-II. The group has also made fundamental contributions to understanding the structural basis for high-speed DNA replication.

Kuriyan Lab Homepage