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August 2015 News

Mizuki Azuma (associate professor) and Chad Slawson (KUMC) are the recipients of a pilot project grant from the Cancer Biology Program of the KU Cancer Center for their proposal entitled “Regulation of EWS-Aurora B pathway during mitosis and tumorigenesis.”  This project will elucidate the pathogenesis of a childhood bone cancer, Ewing sarcoma, by analyzing the EWS-Aurora B dependent regulation of mitosis.



Matthew Buechner (associate professor) has accepted a temporary appointment as a visiting scientist and program officer in the Division of Organismal Systems (Developmental Biology) at the National Science Foundation starting July 13.  At the NSF, Dr. Buechner will help review and fund research grant applications. He will continue to maintain his research lab at KU and mentor graduate students.



Liang Xu (associate professor), along with collaborator Jeffrey Aube (University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy) is the recipient of a Research Project Grant from the National Cancer Institute for their project entitled “Molecular cancer therapy targeting HuR-ARE interaction.”  This award totals $2.16 million over the next five years and is aimed at finding more potent and specific HuR inhibitors which may serve as new therapies for cancer.  Dr. Xu also had his technology featured at the TechConnect World Conference and Expo in Washington, DC. June 14-17, 2015.  This invention finds new compounds that inhibit Musashi activity and specifically kill cancer cells or delay cancer growth, while not affecting normal cells.


Audrey Lamb (professor) served as a co-vice chair of the Enzymes, Coenzymes and Metabolic Pathways Gordon Research Conference in Waterville Valley, New Hampshire, July 12-17.




Angela Fowler (graduate student, Davido lab) is the recipient of the Cora M. Downs Award to attend the International Herpesvirus Workshop, July 25 - 29 in Boise, Idaho.  She presented a talk and a poster entitled, "Specific CDKs enhance HSV-1 viral replication and interact with the immediate-early phosphoprotein, ICP0.”




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August 2015 Presentations

Smita Paranjape (Gamblin lab) successfully defended her doctoral dissertation entitled “Inhibition of Alzheimer's type toxic aggregates of tau with fungal secondary metabolites” on July 7.

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August 2015 Publications

Fowler AM, Shinogle HE, Davido DJDevelopment of a novel cell-based assay to monitor the transactivation activity of the HSV-1 protein ICP0Antiviral Res 120: 1-6.

Gowthaman R, Lyskov S, Karanicolas JDARC 2.0: Improved docking and virtual screening at protein interaction sitesPLoS One 10(7):e0131612.

Gowthaman R, Miller SA, Robers S, Khowsathit J, Lan L, Bai N, Johnson DK, Liu C, Xu L, Anbanandam A, Aube J, Roy A, Karanicolas JDARC: Mapping surface topography by ray-casting for effective virtual screening at protein interaction sitesJ. Med Chem.  [Epub ahead of print]

Guo C-J, Sun W-W, Bruno KS, Oakley BR, Keller NP, Wang CCC.  Spatial regulation of a common precursor from two distinct genes generates metabolite diversity. Chemical Science [In Press]

Ryu H, Yoshida MM, Sridharan V, Kumagai A, Dunphy WG, Dasso M, Azuma YSUMOylation of the C_terminal domain of DNA topoisomerase IIa regulates the centromeric localization of ClaspinCell Cycle [Epub ahead of print]

Smalley NE, An D, Parsek M, Chandler JR, Dandekar A. Quorum sensing protects Pseudomonas aeruginosa against cheating by other species in a laboratory co-culture model.  J Bacteriol [EPub ahead of print]

Sundararajan L, Norris ML, Lundquist EASDN-1/Syndecan Acts in Parallel to the Transmembrane Molecule MIG-13 to Promote Anterior Neuroblast MigrationG3 (Bethesda) [Epub ahead of print].

Wang B, Li K, Jin M, Qiu R, Liu B, Oakley BR, Xiang X.  The Aspergillus nidulans bimC4 mutation provides an excellent tool for identification of kinesin-14 inhibitors. Fungal Genet. Biol. 82:51-55.

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Molecular Biosciences

We are an interdisciplinary group of faculty who perform cutting edge research in a wide range of areas including biochemistry, biophysics, structural biology, bioinformatics, cancer biology, genetics, genomics, immunology, microbiology, virology, neurobiology, molecular, cellular and developmental biology.  We work closely with postdoctoral fellows, graduate students, and undergraduates to investigate fundamental biological problems on all levels from molecules to cells to organisms.  The Department of Molecular Biosciences, located on the Lawrence campus of the University of Kansas system, is an excellent environment for research and education.

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