Seminar: Peter Gunning

Targeting the architecture of the cancer cell: From basic cell biology to first-in-class therapeutics

Date:
22 September 2016 11:30 hrs. - 12:30 hrs.
Location:
Figdor Lecture Theatre, 8th floor RIMLS Building, Geert Grooteplein 26-28, route 289
Title:
Targeting the architecture of the cancer cell: From basic cell biology to first-in-class therapeutics
Speaker(s):

Peter Gunning, University of New South Wales, Australia

Host(s):

Peter Friedl, Dept. of Cell Biology, RIMLS

22-09-2016 11:30:0022-09-2016 12:30:00Europe/AmsterdamTargeting the architecture of the cancer cell: From basic cell biology to first-in-class therapeutics Figdor Lecture Theatre, 8th floor RIMLS Building, Geert Grooteplein 26-28, route 289Rimlsrimls@radboudumc.nl

Remarks / more information:

undefinedThe actin cytoskeleton in mammals is largely composed of filaments which are a co-polymer of actin and tropomyosin. Most, if not all, filaments contain a homopolymer of a single tropomyosin isoform which determines the functional capacity of the filament in an isoform specific manner. Studies in both cell culture and genetically manipulated mice have shown that the tropomyosin isoforms have isoform specific impact on a range of physiological functions from cancer cell survival, ERK signalling, cell migration, neuronal morphogenesis, glucose uptake and stress fibre assembly. Intravital microscopy has allowed us to follow the kinetics of the de novo assembly of actin/tropomyosin co-polymers in vivo which supports a filament co-assembly model. We have developed drugs which target the cancer associated tropomyosin Tpm3.1. The drugs are incorporated into the actin/tropomyosin filament and compromise the ability of the tropomyosin to stabilise the filament leading to disassembly of the cancer cell cytoskeleton. Our drugs synergise with anti-microtubule drugs currently used in the clinic to treat a range of cancers and are expected to proceed to Phase 1 trials in 2017.

Professor Gunning studies the assembly of the architecture of cells and tissues. He discovered that tropomyosins are used to specify the spatial and temporal properties of the cell skeleton. This knowledge has been used to develop new drugs with the potential to treat childhood cancer and other malignancies. Professor Gunning has published over 140 research papers and recently edited the book "Tropomyosin".

Key publications:

  • Tropomyosin Promotes Lamellipodial Persistence by Collaborating with Arp2/3 at the Leading Edge. Curr Biol; 26:1312-8, 2016
  • A small molecule inhibitor of tropomyosin dissociates actin binding from tropomyosin-directed regulation of actin dynamics. Sci Rep; 25: 19816, 2016
  • Tropomyosin - master regulator of actin filament function in the cytoskeleton. J Cell Sci; 128:2965-74, 2015

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