Sumoylation is an essential post-translational modification that is catalysed by a small number of modifying enzymes but regulates thousands of target proteins in a dynamic manner. Small ubiquitin-like modifiers (SUMOs) can be attached to target proteins as one or more monomers or in the form of polymers of different types. SUMO simultaneously modifies groups of functionally related proteins to regulate predominantly nuclear processes, including gene expression, the DNA damage response, RNA processing, cell cycle progression and proteostasis. Progress in understanding the roles and regulation of sumoylation opens new avenues for the targeting of SUMO to treat diseases like cancer.
Alfred Vertegaal obtained his PhD in 2001 in the Laboratory for Molecular Carcinogenesis, headed by Prof. Alex van der Eb, Leiden University, the Netherlands. He moved to the Wellcome Trust Biocentre, Dundee, UK to join the lab of Prof. Angus Lamond, where he started to work on SUMO signaling. Subsequently, he started up his own lab in 2004 at the Department of Molecular Cell Biology, Leiden University Medical Center the Netherlands, where he developed methodology to study SUMO signaling in a proteome-wide manner. Currently, he explores SUMO E1 inhibitors for the treatment of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and acute myeloid leukemia in pre-clinical models.
Host PI: Carmen Rivas. Virus & Cancer Group, CiMUS
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