Mutations in the PI3K family of genes are frequently found in many human cancers. These mutations make PI3K more active, but it is not known how overactive PI3K alters cell function, or how these alterations cause cells to become cancerous.
This project will investigate the mechanisms by which these mutations alter cell function at a molecular level. We have made highly purified normal and mutant PI3K proteins, which will be microinjected directly into live cells. This will allow us to compare the behaviour of normal and mutant PI3K in the cell, as well as their effect on the cell.
Understanding how the mutant proteins alter cell function will allow the rational design of novel therapeutics that specifically target the cancers induced by PI3K mutations.
A/Prof Wayne Phillips
Cancer Council Research Grant
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
$100,000 per annum