Headshot portrait of Ryan Brennan - Bio-X Undergraduate Fellow
2022 Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant

Home Department: Bioengineering
Mentor: Paul Khavari (Dermatology)

“Raf-1 Cancer Proteomics”

This project looks to study the protein, Raf-1, that plays a direct role in the progression of 30% of cancers. Data from the Khavari lab and others suggest that though Raf-1 is necessary for the progression of tumors, it acts through mechanisms that are not completely understood. Preliminary data suggests that Raf-1 directly interacts with the enzyme glutaminase (GLS), critical for glutamine metabolism that provides a source of nutrients for cancer cells. The goal of this project is to investigate the mechanism by which Raf-1 alters cellular metabolism through interactions with GLS. Ryan will be learning and utilizing molecular and cellular techniques such as microscale thermophoresis, Immunofluorescence microscopy, proximity ligation assay, western blotting, co-immunoprecipitation, subcellular fractionation, plasmid cloning, PCR, tissue culture, gel electrophoresis, and proximity dependent biotin identification (BioID). This work will produce data that will help illuminate how the Raf-1 protein contributes to the progression of Raf-1-related cancers.