Cancer and Cell Signaling

2 cancer cells after division

Courtesy David Brautigan, PhD.

Cell signaling is the process where cells respond to their environment – hormones, growth factors, drugs, metabolites, etc. – and continuously make a decision to live, grow and proliferate, or die. It’s that dramatic. Signaling research here at UVA has discovered enzymes such as protein kinases that integrate inputs from the environment to determine cell fate. These enzymes are the molecular receptors of new generations of pharmaceuticals called “targeted therapies”. Current research in MIC uses genetic and pharmacological tools to discover and understand the operation of signaling networks, especially in cancer. We use cell lines in culture, as well as preclinical xenograft and genetic animal models to study what factors drive cancer, and how cancers respond to and evade therapy. Results of this research translate into improved treatment for patients of today and tomorrow.


Roger Abounader

Abounader, Roger

Basic and translational brain tumor research

Timothy Bender

Bender, Timothy P.

Regulation of gene expression during lymphocyte development

Amy Bouton

Bouton, Amy H.

Signaling Pathways and Breast Cancer

David Brautigan

Brautigan, David L.

Cell signaling in Cancer and Ciliopathies.

Alison Criss

Criss, Alison K.

Cellular and molecular mechanisms of Neisserial pathogenesis

Andrew Dudley

Dudley, Andrew

Tumor microenvironment and mechanisms of tumor neovascularization

Daniel Engel

Engel, Daniel A.

Drug Discovery and Molecular Biology of Pathogenic RNA viruses: Ebola, SARS-CoV-2, Influenza and Zika

Victor Engelhard

Engelhard, Victor H.

Identification of MHC-restricted tumor antigens / Control of T cell homing to tumors / Tertiary lymphoid structures and intratumoral immunity

Loren Erickson

Erickson, Loren D.

Immune mechanisms of pathogenic antibody production in allergy and autoimmunity

Daniel Gioeli

Gioeli, Daniel

Signal transduction in cancer cells


Hammarskjöld, Marie-Louise

Post Transcriptional Gene Regulation and the Molecular Biology of Human Retroviruses

David Kashatus

Kashatus, David F

The Role of Mitochondrial Fusion and Fission in Tumorigenesis.

Ulrike Lorenz

Lorenz, Ulrike M

Maintaining and Breaking Immune Tolerance

Kwon-Sik Park

Park, Kwon-Sik

Mechanisms of organ development and homeostasis and tumor development

Lucy Pemberton

Pemberton, Lucy F.

Nuclear Transport in Chromatin Assembly and Transcriptional Regulation

Kodi Ravichandran

Ravichandran, Kodi S.

Apoptotic cell clearance mechanisms in health and disease

Melanie Rutkowski

Rutkowski, Melanie

Influence of commensal microbes on immune homeostasis, anti-tumor immunity, and metastasis

Michael Weber

Weber, Michael J.

Targeting Cell Signaling for Cancer Therapy.

Hui Zong

Zong, Hui

Early detection, cancer prevention, and tumor microenvironment