ACRF Centenary Cancer Research Centre

Lab head: Professor Philip Hogg
Location: Level 4 West, Charles Perkin Centre D17

Control of complement cascade by labile disulphide bonds

Primary supervisor: Joyce Chiu

The complement system is a key component of innate immunity that offers sophisticated protection against threats to the host organism. Complement is also an important component of tumour antibody-based immunotherapy by mediating tumour cell cytolysis.  Activation of complement leads to a cascade of proteolytic events that eventually results in the destruction of pathogens. Imbalance of complement activity can be deleterious. Excessive complement activity contributes to Alzheimer’s disease, whereas its deficiency leads to increased susceptibility to infection. Using a bioinformatics approach, we have identified labile disulphide bonds that can be potential redox switches in complement proteins. This project aims to elucidate how the activity of complement proteins are regulated by these labile disulphide bonds.

Techniques involve included proteomics, flow cytometry, enzyme kinetics and molecular biology.

Reference: Pijning, A., Chiu, J., Yeo, R., Wong, J. and Hogg, P. (2017) Identification of allosteric disulphides from labile bonds in X-ray structures. R Soc Open Sci (published online 7 February 2018)

Discipline: Pathology
Co-supervisors: Philip Hogg
Keywords: Immunology, Cancer, Proteomics