Links between regulation of gene expression and cancer

Prof. Moshe Oren, Department of Molecular Cell Biology

Director, Moross Integrated Cancer Center

The main goals of Prof. Oren’s laboratory are to elucidate the biochemical and biological processes that underlie the ability of p53 to act as a tumor suppressor and, more broadly, to explore the mechanistic links between regulation of gene expression and cancer.

In addition, Prof. Oren is also interested in the following topics:

(1) Mdm2, an oncogene whose protein products inhibit the biochemical activity of p53 and target p53 for rapid degradation;

(2) ARF, a tumor suppressor that can trigger p53 activation in cancer-prone cells;

(3) Lats2, another tumor suppressor that links p53 activation to oncogenic processes and to regulation of genome stability;

(4) Mutant p53 gain of function, by which the mutated protein acquires additional pro-oncogenic functions;

(5) RNF20, an enzyme responsible for ubiquitination of histone H2B, which acts as a putative tumor suppressor through selective regulation of gene expression;

(6) microRNAs, small non-coding RNAs whose aberrant expression is broadly involved in cancer