Research: The research goal of our laboratory is to understand the molecular mechanism of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) signaling and the regulation of cell death and the role of cell death in tumorigenesis. Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) is a proinflammatory cytokine that plays a critical role in diverse cellular events, including cell proliferation, differentiation, and cell death. TNF is also involved in many types of diseases, including cancer. Inappropriate production of TNF plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of both acute and chronic inflammatory diseases such as septic shock, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and arthritis. The development of anti-TNFalpha therapy is arguably the most significant achievement in the treatment of autoimmune-diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis and Crohn's disease. Opposing effects of TNF on cancer have been described: a high dose of TNF (acute inflammation) has anti-neoplastic effects, such as direct cytotoxicity on certain types of cancer, while an endogenous low-dose of TNF (chronic inflammation) promotes cancer development. Studies from many laboratories have demonstrated that the diverse TNF-mediated biological responses are achieved through activating multiple signaling pathways (see below). Although much information about TNF signaling has been obtained in recent years, many molecular aspects of TNF signaling and its role in inflammation and cancer development remain unknown. Therefore, uncovering the molecular mechanism of TNF signaling will not only shed new light on the physiological regulation of TNF function but also help to understand its role in inflammation and cancer development. In last year, we have made several significant contributions to the understanding of the molecular mechanism regulating TNF signaling and the regulation of cell death. In the future, we will continue to investigate the regulation of TNF signaling, particularly the molecular mechanisms of TNF-induced cell death, and to explore the role of cell death in tumorigenesis as specified in the following: Studying the regulation of TNF-induced cell death and the involvement of key cell death regulatory proteins in tumorigenesis Aim1: Investigating the regulation of TNF-induced apoptosis by the novel anti-apoptotic protein, ATIA, and its potential role in tumorigenesis. a) Understanding the underlying mechanism of the anti-apoptotic effect of ATIA. b) Demonstrating the importance of ATIA in tumorigenesis.
Aim 2 : Identifying and studying novel players in TNF-induced necrosis and exploring the role of necrosis in tumorigenesis.
Aim2 : understand the regulation of TNF-induced necrosis. a) Investigate the mechanism of MLKL-mediated necrosis. b) identifying new components of TNF-induced necrosis.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Investigator-Initiated Intramural Research Projects (ZIA)
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National Cancer Institute Division of Clinical Sciences
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Zhang, Tiejun; Park, Kyeong Ah; Li, Yuwen et al. (2013) PHF20 regulates NF-*B signalling by disrupting recruitment of PP2A to p65. Nat Commun 4:2062
Morgan, Michael J; Kim, You-Sun; Liu, Zheng-gang (2009) Membrane-bound Fas ligand requires RIP1 for efficient activation of caspase-8 within the death-inducing signaling complex. J Immunol 183:3278-84
Yamashita, Motozo; Fatyol, Karoly; Jin, Chaoyang et al. (2008) TRAF6 mediates Smad-independent activation of JNK and p38 by TGF-beta. Mol Cell 31:918-24
Pobezinskaya, Yelena L; Kim, You-Sun; Choksi, Swati et al. (2008) The function of TRADD in signaling through tumor necrosis factor receptor 1 and TRIF-dependent Toll-like receptors. Nat Immunol 9:1047-54