Associate Professor YU Chun Kong, Victor
Department of Pharmacy
National University of Singapore
Block S4 level 3
Apoptosis is a process by which cells actively commit suicide to get rid of damaged or infected cells. Activation of the cell suicide program is highly regulated and it is under the tight control of a network of interrelated signals to ensure the proper functioning of this important physiological process. Recent evidence suggests that malfunctioning of the cell suicide program is a causative factor in a wide variety of major human diseases including cancers and neurodegenerative diseases.
Accumulative evidence over the last decade has strongly implicated mitochondria are the major organelles involved in the signal transduction and biochemical execution of apoptosis. A/P Yu’s research program has been focusing on dissecting the molecular circuits in mitochondria responsible for regulating the final steps of the apoptosis signaling process. The long term goal of my work, in short, is to identify ways and means to regulate the core apoptotic mechanism in mitochondria to support the drug development effort. We envision that through this work, suitable cellular targets and compounds that are useful for supporting drug development effort in combating human cancers and possibly many other diseases stem from defective functioning of the cell suicide program will be identified. The laboratory adopts a combined cell, molecular, chemical and genetic approaches in its investigative effort. Currently, the following projects are actively being pursued in the laboratory: