Two PhD positions are currently available in my l...
Sunday 01 October 2017

Two PhD positions are currently available in my lab from Fall 2017: The first is to study the metabolism of Glutamate and Glutamine and the signals that induce neuronal survival in Drosophila models for neuronal degeneration diseases, including Huntington’s Disease, Spinocerebellar Ataxias and Amyotrophic Lateral sclerosis. The second is to study the role of Myc on growth and in tumors. Developing tumors are subjected to nutrient limitations, thus tumor cells reprogram their metabolic pathways to allow a better grow. One of the genes that controls these mechanisms is the proto-oncogene c-myc. Expression of Myc activates survival pathways and induces cell-competition, a process that occurs when metabolically better fit cells or “winner” grow near wild-type “loser” cells with lower levels of Myc. The winner cells acquire a super-competitor condition and the ability to induce the death of the slower-growing cells. A similar event has been described during the initial steps of cancerization when tumor-promoting genes, in precancerous cells, give a growth advantaged causing cells to act as winners and to eliminate non-cancerous cells (losers). Using genomics and proteomics approaches we found novel targets of Myc, member of ribosomal biogenesis (growth) and lipid metabolism, and we are currently characterizing their role in cell competition.

In addition, small short time projects are available for Master and undergraduate students