Development of Novel p16INK4a Mimetics as Anticancer Therapy
The central hypothesis of this proposal is that protein-protein interactions can be replicated or disrupted by stabilized peptides that have been identified via the identification of pharmacophores of small peptides that interact with CDK4/6. The basis for this hypothesis is formed by preliminary data generated by this lab that demonstrates small molecule inhibition of CDK4/6 can be achieved by applying peptide-based structure-function studies for pharmacophore identification. The rationale for the research project is that stabilized peptides derived from these pharmacophores can be identified and evaluated on a faster basis than de novo synthesis of a series of compounds. The researchers are using molecular dynamics to model designed peptides for properties such as increased helical propensity. They are also solving NMR-based structures for peptides and using MSI resources for that as well.
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