Ubiquitin Ligase Machinery in Eukaryotic Biology
Our current research focuses on a superfamily of multi-component protein machines, known as cullin-RING ubiquitin ligases. By controlling protein turnover, these cellular machines regulate diverse biological processes, such as cell cycle progression, signal transduction, transcription, DNA repair, and metabolism. Dysregulation of these cellular protein complexes has been associated with multiple human disorders including cancer, neurological diseases, and viral infection.
An important technique used in our research is protein complex X-ray crystallography. It allows us to determine the atomic 3-D structures of protein machines that perceive, decipher, transmit, and implement biologic signals. Seeing is believing. A close-up view of these nano-scale cellular components can tell us in details how they engage and work together to make life possible.
From our studies, we hope to derive fundamental principles of life science at molecular level and have a direct impact in biomedicine by accelerating the discovery and development of novel therapeutic drugs.