Professor of Pharmacology
Ph.D., Purdue University
The research in our laboratory mainly focuses on signal transduction in regulating cell growth and organ size. We study the TSC-mTOR and hippo-YAP pathways. Dysregulation of these pathways has been frequently observed in human diseases, particularly cancer. The TSC-mTOR pathway plays a major role in cell size control by promoting biosynthesis and inhibiting autophagy. The Hippo tumor suppressor pathway regulates organ size and tissue homeostasis. Current research includes: 1) mechanisms of mTOR in nutrient signaling and autophagy regulation; 2) regulation of the Hippo pathway by cell-cell contact and G-protein coupled receptor signaling.
BMS Focus Areas:
Kim, J., Kundu, M., Viollet, B., and Guan K-L., (2011) AMPK and mTOR regulate autophagy via direct phosphorylation of ULK1. Nature Cell Biol. 13, 132-141.
Yu, F-X., Zhao, B., Panupinthu, etal., and Guan, K-L. (2012) Regulation of the Hippo-YAP pathway by G-protein coupled receptor signaling. Cell 150, 780-91.
Tumaneng, K., Schlegelmilch, K., Russell, R.C., et al., and Guan, K-L. (2012) YAP mediates crosstalk between the Hippo and PI3K-TOR pathways by suppressing PTEN via miR-29. Nature Cell Biol. 14, 1322-1329.
Kim, J., Kim, Y.C., Fang, C., et al., Guan, K-L. (2013) Diff erential regulation of distinct Vps34 complexes by AMPK in nutrient stress and autophagy. Cell 152, 290-303.
Russell, R.C., Tian, Y., Yuan, H., et al., Guan, K-L. (2013) ULK1 induces autophagy by phosphorylating Beclin-1 and activating Vps34 lipid kinase. Nature Cell Biol. 15, 741-50.
Yu, FX., Luo, J., Mo, J-S., et al,, Zhang, K. and Guan, K-L. (2014) Mutant Gq/11 promote uveal melanoma tumorigenesis by activating YAP. Cancer Cell 25, 822-830.