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WMS Research Fellow awarded Faculty Thesis Prize for cancer research


Research Fellow Gabrielle Larocque has been awarded the WMS Thesis Prize by the University of Warwick’s Faculty of Science, Engineering and Medicine in recognition of her cancer research.

This year the Faculty awarded a thesis prize to one person in each of its 10 departments and schools. Gabrielle won the WMS prize for her thesis on ‘Cell Biology of Tumor Protein D54’. Previously, all that was known about this protein was that it is overexpressed in cancer and linked to aggressive, metastatic forms of breast cancer. During her PhD, Gabrielle found that the protein is involved in cell migration by controlling how integrins (proteins that allow cells to stick to surfaces) are processed by the cell. Her work showed that TPD54 does this by interacting with numerous Rab GTPase proteins, potentially explaining why patients with tumours that overexpress this protein have such poor prognosis.

Nominating her for the award, Gabrielle’s supervisor Professor Stephen Royle said: “Gabrielle worked on this project single-handedly and, throughout her PhD, she came up with innovative ideas and had the energy needed to drive the project on independently. She thinks critically, does high quality science and has enormous potential as a future leader in biomedical science.”

Congratulations, Gabrielle!