Project topic: Drug discovery at the boundary of infection and cancer
The TASPPI (Targeted Stabilization of Protein-Protein Interactions) project aims to open a new field of drug discovery. While much effort has been put into the inhibition of the PPIs, only little is known about the stabilization of protein-protein interactions. Therefore the combined knowledge of chemistry, cell biology and pathogenesis will be used to characterize the interface of relevant PPIs and modulating small compounds. These molecules will be design to stabilize this interface. Additionally to the biophysical and the structural analysis, these compounds will be tested in cell culture to explore their potential as drugs.
Since the 14-3-3 proteins are involved in a huge variety of diseases from small infections to severe metabolic diseases and are highly abundant in human cells, we will concentrate on this protein family. During my project I will concentrate on target proteins that are involved in infections and cancer.