Grants awarded

Expanding the druggable proteome of immune cells – towards synthetic immune regulation

Grantholder:

Dr Madeline Kavanagh

University of Dundee

United Kingdom

Drugs capable of precisely manipulating the immune response have the potential to treat a broad spectrum of diseases, including chronic inflammation and infection, neurodegeneration and cancer. However, to realise this potential, we need to better understand how the immune system is regulated at the molecular level and how it can be manipulated by drugs.

I will use a combination of reactive small molecules and mass spectrometry to uncover new drug targets in immune cells. I will also develop protocols to verify and explore how the binding of small molecules to proteins affects immune function, and identify ways to manipulate intracellular communication networks that rely on the small protein ubiquitin.

My findings will guide the development of chemical tools that can dissect the principles of immune regulation and inform the design of novel immunotherapy drugs.