399286 Multiscale Systems Analyses Advancing Drug Discovery Efforts and Therapeutic Development

Sunday, November 16, 2014
Galleria Exhibit Hall (Hilton Atlanta)
Carissa L. Young, Department of Biological Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA; Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Delaware, Newark, DE; UD Bio-Imaging Center, Delaware Biotechnology Institute, Newark, DE

Systems biology and biomedical control research has guided the rigorous assessment of regulation at the molecular, cellular, and tissue levels. Systems biology approaches — with its combination of computational, experimental and observational inquiry — has extended from model systems to human physiology and now to areas of pharmacology and human health. The Young Lab will combine expertise in systems biology, protein and cellular engineering, membrane biology, and synthetic biology to (a) identify and differentiate cell stress response pathways following local perturbations and (b) advance a mechanistic-understanding of spatiotemporal signaling that influences cell/tissue function. Our research pursuits are motivated by current challenges in drug discovery, therapeutic development, biopharmaceutical production, and limitations of human disease models. 

The Young Lab will focus initially on three research objectives:

(1) Characterize diverse, global consequences of system disturbances leading to cell stress in a model eukaryote,

(2) Exploit these host-response pathways to facilitate biopharmaceutical production in yeast, S. cerevisiae, and

(3) Investigate the regulation of system perturbations resulting in the altered behavior of multicellular human tissue as a consequence of inflammation, including therapeutic intervention to facilitate drug discovery efforts in disease progression.

Due to the intrinsic complexity of biological systems, integration of experimental and computational approaches is crucial to transform the way we study cell physiology and behavior. To achieve a global understanding of how cellular processes and molecular interactions perform under external and internal perturbations, molecular measurements from many hierarchical cellular levels require integration within appropriate computational frameworks as recently described [1,2]. In the Young Lab, we will foster a research environment that is committed to excellence, encourages innovation and diversity, and advances scientific pursuits in drug discovery and development through multidisciplinary efforts.

[1] C. L. Young and A. S. Robinson, Protein Folding and Secretion: Mechanistic Insights Advancing Recombinant Protein Production in S. cerevisiae, Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 2014 Jul 14;30C:168-177.

[2] M. R. Ebrahimkhani, C. L. Young, D. A. Lauffenburger, L. G. Griffith, J. T. Borenstein Approaches to In Vitro Tissue Regeneration with Application for Human Disease Modeling and Drug Development. Drug Discovery Today, 2014 Jun;19(6):754-762.


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