Professor John Davey:
"Sex and drugs and Rac and Rho"
17 November 2009
Medical Teaching Centre 6pm until 7pm, followed by a drinks reception
Our research concerns cell communication. We wish to discover how cells talk to each other and how we can influence what they say or hear.
Most of our work is focused on the mating response pathway in yeast as this provides a simple model for more complicated pathways in human cells. In both cases, receptors on the cell surface detect external signals and activate intracellular signalling pathways to bring about changes in cell behavior. Small G proteins (such as Rac and Rho) play important roles as molecular switches in many of these signalling pathways. Many of the receptors are also targets for some of the most widely prescribed pharmaceutical drugs.
My talk will review how we identified the signalling components, describe how we exploited this information to discover new drugs, and explain how we are looking to develop the system in the future.