Our lab is currently studying drug interactions with a newly discovered cancer specific targets, known as G-quadruplex and i-motif.  G-quadruplex is a uniquely folded DNA structure that is located in the promoter region of a number of oncogenes.  Drugs that bind to G-quadruplex may be able to turn off the expression of these oncogenes, thereby suppressing tumor growth. By measuring the energetics of the drug/DNA binding, new information will help in the design of new drugs that are more selective for cancer specific targets and therefore, more effective in the treatment of cancer.

In addition, our lab is investigating the structure of the i-motif in the silencer element of the c-MYC promoter and its drug complexes, which will then be used as a basis for cancer drug design and development. 

Finally, we are evaluating higher order DNA structures formed in the promoter region of bcl-2.  Our goal is to identify lead compounds for the development of drugs that will attenuate bcl-2 expression. 





Northern Arizona University

Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
Box 5698
Flagstaff, AZ  86011-5698
Last Updated: 23 July 2008