Many drugs (bottom) are produced by environmental bacteria however the pathways that generate these molecules tend to be dormant in the laboratory. By screening for chemicals that induce these pathways (note the blue pigment production activated by compound 1 (top) investigators are seeking new drugs for diseases ranging from antibiotic resistant infections to currently untreatable cancers.

Many drugs (bottom) are produced by environmental bacteria however the pathways that generate these molecules tend to be dormant in the laboratory. By screening for chemicals that induce these pathways (note the blue pigment production activated by compound 1 (top) investigators are seeking new drugs for diseases ranging from antibiotic resistant infections to currently untreatable cancers.

Biochemistry is the central discipline in the discovery of new medicines.

Some of our investigators seek to discover new therapeutic molecules through high throughput screens of libraries of synthetic compounds. Others purify and study biologically active molecules produced by environmental microorganisms. The molecules discovered this way have applications as antibiotics, antifungal and anticancer therapeutics.

Another focus harnesses our strengths in structural biology. By investigating the biochemical and structural characteristics of disease-associated proteins in their native and mutated forms we can understand how various genetic and acquired defects can disease.

For the proteins associated with cystic fibrosis, mitochondrial disease, cancer and a wide variety of metabolic disorders, physical, biochemical and catalytic studies are carried out to derive a picture of both normal and abnormal structure and function. Future studies are targeted at finding techniques and methodologies to correct the abnormal cellular function derived from the behaviour of the mutant protein.

 

Faculty in the Department conducting research in this area:

Angers Lab

Molecular mechanisms underlying intracellular signalling activated by the Wnt and Hedgehog families of secreted growth factors

Angers Lab

Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy
144 College Street, Room 901
Toronto, ON

Dr. Stephane Angers


416-978-4939   stephane.angers@utoronto.ca

Attisano Lab

Morphogen signalling pathways and the regulation of complex biological responses

Attisano Lab

160 College Street, room 1008

Dr. Liliana Attisano


416-946-3129   liliana.attisano@utoronto.ca

The Bear Lab

Research in Cystic Fibrosis and Kidney Disease

The Bear Lab

The Hospital for Sick Children
Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning
686 Bay St.

Dr. Christine E. Bear


416-813-5981   bear@sickkids.ca

Davidson Lab

Bacteriophages

Davidson Lab

MaRS Centre, West Tower
661 University Ave., Room 1634
Toronto, ON

Dr. Alan R. Davidson


416-978-0332   alan.davidson@utoronto.ca

Deber lab

Peptide and Protein Structure in Membranes: From Folding to Drug Discovery

Deber lab

Research Institute, The Hospital for Sick Children
Molecular Structure & Function
PGCRL, Room 20.9712
686 Bay Street

Dr. Charles M. Deber


416-813-5924   deber@sickkids.ca

Ensminger Group

The Evolution of Microbial Disease

Ensminger Group

MSB Room 4261
1 King's College Circle

Dr. Alexander W. Ensminger


416-978-6522   alex.ensminger@utoronto.ca

Houry Lab

The Function of Molecular Chaperones and ATP-dependent Proteases in Protein Homeostasis

Houry Lab

1 King's College Circle
Medical Sciences Building, Room 5308

Dr. Walid A. Houry


416-946-7141   walid.houry@utoronto.ca

Howell Lab

Microbial Biofilm Formation: From Molecular Mechanisms to Therapeutics

Howell Lab

The Hospital for Sick Children
Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning (PGCRL)
Room 20-9715
686 Bay Street

Dr. P. Lynne Howell


416-813-5378   howell@sickkids.ca

Julien laboratory

Targeting B cell receptors in vaccine and disease

Julien laboratory

Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning (PGCRL), Room 20-9703
686 Bay St.

Dr. Jean-Philippe Julien


416-813-7654, ext. 309424   jean-philippe.julien@sickkids.ca

Kahr lab

Structure and Function of Platelets and Their Development from Megakaryocytes

Kahr lab

The Hospital for Sick Children
PGCRL, Rm 19.9714
686 Bay Street

Dr. Walter H.A. Kahr


416-813-7977   walter.kahr@sickkids.ca

Lee Lab

Mechanisms of endothelial permeability

Lee Lab

St. Michael's Hospital
LKS, Room 613

Dr. Warren L. Lee


416-864-6060-77656   leew@smh.ca

Lingwood Lab

Biological functions of glycosphingolipids

Lingwood Lab

Rm 21-9707
Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning
The Hospital for Sick Children
686 Bay Street

Dr. Clifford A. Lingwood


416 813 5998   cling@sickkids.ca

Maxwell Lab

Bacteriophages and Human Health

Maxwell Lab

MaRS Centre, West Tower
661 University Ave., Suite 1600

Dr. Karen L. Maxwell


416-978-0872   karen.maxwell@utoronto.ca

Maynes Lab

Models for Cardiac and Neuronal Drug Toxicity and New Methods of Improving Cardiac Function

Maynes Lab

Department of Anesthesia and Pain Medicine
Hospital for Sick Children
555 University Ave

Dr. Jason T. Maynes


416-813-5934   jason.maynes@sickkids.ca

McQuibban Mitophagy Laboratory

Mitochondrial Quality Control Pathways and Human Neurodegenerative Disease

McQuibban Mitophagy Laboratory

University of Toronto
Faculty of Medicine, Department of Biochemistry
MaRS Centre, West Tower
661 University Ave., Suite 1500, Rm 1536

Dr. G. Angus McQuibban


416-978-6820   angus.mcquibban@utoronto.ca

Melnyk Lab

Bacterial Toxin Pathogenesis: Molecular Mechanisms & Drug Discovery

Melnyk Lab

Dr. Roman A. Melnyk


416-813-7654 ext. 328557   roman.melnyk@sickkids.ca

Mennella Lab

Discovery of supramolecular assemblies responsible for microcephaly and ciliopathies

Mennella Lab

The Hospital for Sick Children
Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning
686 Bay Street, Rm. 18.9709 Toronto, ON

Dr. Vito Mennella


(416)-813-7654 ext. 309267   vito.mennella@sickkids.ca

Moraes Lab

Membrane Protein Structural Biology

Moraes Lab

Rm 5366 Medical Sciences Building
1 King's College Circle

Dr. Trevor F. Moraes


416-946-3048   trevor.moraes@utoronto.ca

Nodwell Group

Chemical Communication and Warfare Among Microorganisms

Nodwell Group

Medical Sciences Building
1 King's College Circle

Dr. Justin Nodwell


416 978 6892   chair.biochemistry@utoronto.ca

Ohh Lab

Molecular Mechanisms of Cancer

Ohh Lab

MaRS Centre, West Tower
661 University Avenue, Suite 1512

Dr. Michael Ohh


416-946-7922   michael.ohh@utoronto.ca

Pai Lab

The structural determinants of protein function

Pai Lab

MSB, Room 5358
1 KIng's College Circle

Dr. Emil F. Pai


416-581-7545   pai@hera.med.utoronto.ca

Rotin's lab

Biochemistry and function of the Nedd4 family of ubiquitin ligases

Rotin's lab

PGCRL, 19-9715,
686 Bay Street

Dr. Daniela Rotin


416-813-5098   drotin@sickkids.ca

Sicheri Lab

Structural Biology of Eukaryotic Signal Transduction

Sicheri Lab

Mount Sinai Hospital
600 University Avenue, Room 1090

Dr. Frank Sicheri


416 586-8471   sicheri@lunenfeld.ca

The Stagljar Lab

Interactome networks of integral membrane proteins and their roles in health & disease

The Stagljar Lab

Donnelly Centre
160 College Street

Dr. Igor Stagljar


1 416 946 7828   igor.stagljar@utoronto.ca

Watts Lab

Protein Misfolding and Neurodegenerative Diseases

Watts Lab

Tanz Centre for Research in Neurodegenerative Diseases
Krembil Discovery Tower
60 Leonard Ave., Rm. 6KD412

Dr. Joel C. Watts


416-507-6891   joel.watts@utoronto.ca