Department of
Biological Chemistry & Molecular Pharmacology

Growth factors / hormones

Alan D. D'Andrea

Professor
Telephone: 
617- 632-2112
Fax: 
617- 632-5757
Address: 
Room 640, Mayer Building, DFCI
Address: 
44 Binney Street
Address: 
Boston , MA 02115

Our laboratory examines the molecular signaling pathways which regulate the DNA damage response in mammalian cells. Disruption of these pathways, by germline or somatic mutation, leads to genomic instability, cellular sensitivity to ionizing radiation, and defective cell cycle checkpoints and DNA repair. These pathways are often disrupted in cancer cells, accounting for the chromosome instability and increased mutation frequency in human tumors.

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Rosalind Segal

Professor
Telephone: 
617-632-4737
Fax: 
617-632-2085
Address: 
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Address: 
44 Binney Street
Address: 
Dana 620
Address: 
Boston, MA 02115

The research work in our laboratory has focused on growth factors that regulate survival and proliferation in the developing nervous system. These regulatory pathways are frequently disrupted in tumor formation or in neurodegeneration.

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Steven E. Shoelson

Professor
Telephone: 
617-732-2528
Fax: 
617-735-1970
Address: 
Dept. of Medicine
Address: 
Joslin Diabetes Center
Address: 
One Joslin Place
Address: 
Boston, MA 02115

Our studies can be divided into two main areas, (1) pathophysiological mechanisms of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, and (2) structural biology of diabetes and obesity. Type 1 or insulin-dependent diabetes is caused by insulin deficiency, in most cases due to autoimmune destruction of pancreatic beta cells. Fewer than 1 in 10 diabetics have this more severe form of the disease. Type 2 diabetes is much more common, and its prevalence is rapidly rising. Type 2 diabetes or NIDDM, affects greater than 10% of our population. In type 2 diabetes insulin is present, often in excess, but target tissues fail to respond appropriately. This is referred to as insulin resistance, a problem in signal transduction.

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Morris F. White

Professor
Telephone: 
617-732-2578
Fax: 
617-732-2593
Address: 
Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Address: 
Department of Pediatrics, Division of Endocrinology
Address: 
Children's Hospital, New Research Building, Room 4210
Address: 
300 Longwood Ave.
Address: 
Boston, MA 02115

We investigate the molecular basis of insulin signal transduction to understand the pathophysiology of diabetes and related disorders, including obesity, infertility, and cardiovascular and retinal disease. Much of our work on signaling pathways that mediate the insulin response was fueled by our discovery of the insulin receptor substrate (IRS) protein family. Since diabetes is a complicated, multisystem disease, we use mice to integrate our molecular studies with physiology. Transgenic mice lacking the genes for Irs1 or Irs2 reveal a surprisingly close relation between the molecular regulation of insulin secretion and that of insulin action. We now understand that the IRS2-branch of the insulin/IGF signaling pathways controls pancreatic β-cell growth, function and survival.

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