Student NameNoah Alter
Faculty Mentor NameDaiqing Liao
CollegeCollege of Medicine
MajorBiomedical Engineering
Research InterestsCancer, Tumor Biology, Signaling Cascades
Academic AwardsFlorida Bright Futures, Golden Key Honor Society, University Scholars Program
OrganizationsAces in Motion, Outreach For Pediatric Oncology
Hobbies and InterestsSoccer, Boxing, Chess

Research Project

SREBP-1 and Death Domain Associated Protein (DAXX) Interactions in Regulating Lipogenic Gene Expression

Rapidly proliferating cancer cells require a continual supply of endogenous lipids to satiate their energetic and anabolic demands. A frequent attribute among carcinogenic cells is their ability to modulate their cellular metabolism in order to sustain their intrinsic production of ATP and macromolecules required for cellular division, growth, and homeostasis. In concurrence with a tumor cell’s introduction to an inadequate lipid environment, simultaneous upregulation of innate homeostatic mechanisms occurs to ensure the cells reliance upon de novo lipogenesis. In addition, cellular lipogenesis is regulated by Sterol Regulatory Element-Binding Protein 1 (SREBP-1), a transcription factor controlling cellular lipid concentration homeostasis, and Death Domain Associated Protein (DAXX), a chromatin regulator associated with cell death and survival. Lipogenetic gene expression via SREBP-1 translocation to the nucleus and the subsequent binding of DAXX to SREBP-1 establishes an indispensable relationship between cancer cells’ proliferation and tumor lipogenesis.