Stephen R. Hann, Ph.D.

Stephen R. Hann, Ph.D.

Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology

Director of Graduate Studies (DGS)

B-2317A/B-2324 Medical Center North
B-2317 Medical Center North
(615) 343-4344


Oncogenes, translational regulation, gene expression.
Lab Website

A.B., University of California, Berkeley
Ph.D., University of California, Riverside

Research Description

Our principal research interest focuses on the regulation and function of the oncogene and transcriptional regulator, c-myc. Oncogenic c-Myc is thought to be a driving force in up to 70% of human cancers. Alterations of the c-myc gene are found associated with several types of tumors in several human cancers, including lymphoma and colon, breast and lung cancers. Using a combination of molecular and biochemical techniques, we are investigating the complex role of c-Myc as transcriptional regulator, and its biological roles in cellular proliferation, apoptosis and oncogenesis both in culture and in animals. Our current focus is on proteins that control c-Myc function through direct interaction. We identified two novel binding proteins, the tumor suppressor ARF and nucleophosmin, which have opposite effects on c-Myc. ARF appears to negatively affect c-Myc transformation by controlling c-Myc-induced apoptosis through a new mechanism. In contrast, nucleophosmin is necessary for the ability of c-Myc to transform cells efficiently. Understanding the mechanism and functional consequences of these interactions will allow us to develop effective therapeutic approaches to inhibit c-Myc-induced tumorigenesis. We are also continuing to investigate the mechanism of c-Myc transcriptional activity, including the identification of target genes that mediate c-Myc function and the role of c-Myc post-translational modifications, proteolysis and localization.

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