Dr. Barbara Christy's lab is interested in proteins involved in control of mammalian cell growth and differentiation. A major project in the laboratory focuses on the Id proteins.
Id proteins are small helix-loop-helix (HLH) proteins which are thought to act as dominant-negative regulators of transcription factors which regulate cellular differentiation and growth in a number of cell lineages. Id proteins interact with these and other regulatory proteins to affect their activities, and have recently been implicated in tumorigenesis and angiogenesis.
We are investigating the mechanisms of action of the four mammalian Id proteins (Id1-4). We have identified proteins which interact with these proteins and thus represent targets for Id protein regulation. On the other hand, some of the interacting proteins represent proteins which may regulate Id protein activities.
One such protein, JAB1, is a subunit of a large protein complex called the COP9 signalosome. This complex is implicated in cell cycle regulation and cell signaling. They are currently investigating the consequences of the Id-JAB1 interaction in cells.
Our long-term goal is to define the importance of these and other regulatory proteins in the control of growth and differentiation, and to devise ways of controlling these activities.
Seo YK, Mirkheshti N, Song CS, Kim S, Dodds S, Ahn SC, Christy B, Mendez-Meza R, Ittmann MM, Abboud-Werner S, and Chatterjee B: (2013) SULT2B1b sulfotransferase: induction by vitamin D receptor and reduced expression in prostate cancer. Mol Endocrinol. 27(6): 925-39.
Livi CB, Hardman RL, Christy BA, Dodds SG, Jones D, Williams C, Strong R, Bokov A, Javors MA, Ikeno Y, Hubbard G, Hasty P, and Sharp ZD: (2013) Rapamycin extends life span of Rb1+/- mice by inhibiting neuroendocrine tumors. AGING (Albany NY). 5(2): 100-10. ePublished www.impactaging.com.