IBB Breakfast Club Seminar Series

Primary tabs

“What’s Eating You?”  Quantifying Proteolytic Activity in Health and Disease with Novel Assays and Computational ModelsManu Platt, PhD - Assistant Professor, Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Cancer ScholarAbstract Cathepsins are enzymes with the most powerful human collagenase and elastase activity that are upregulated at sites of normal tissue remodeling and during tissue-destructive disease progression. We study them in the context of tissue remodeling in cancer progression and cardiovascular diseases such as sickle cell disease and atherosclerosis.  They are synthesized as stable inactive precursors requiring activation by propeptide cleavage, and detection of mature cathepsins and quantification of specific activity have proven difficult due to instability of the mature, active enzyme extracellularly, diminishing appreciation for their involvement in a large number of diseases.  During this seminar, we will discuss our studies of this family of powerful proteases in diseases with particular attention to cancer and sickle cell disease.  First, we will discuss the important development of a reliable, sensitive method of zymography to detect the activity of mature cathepsins K, L, S, and V and integrating that assay with the development of a computational kinetic model to predict cathepsin-mediated tissue remodeling by cells during advancing disease.  Secondly, we will discuss our applications of these technologies and potential use as both diagnostic and prognostic indicators of human breast, lung, and cervical cancer as well as newly identified mechanisms of cathepsin activity in complications of stroke in children with sickle cell disease.  The IBB Breakfast Club seminar series was started with the spirit of the Institute's interdisciplinary mission in mind. The goal of the seminar series is to highlight research taking place throughout the institute to enable the IBB community to further collaborative opportunities and interdisciplinary research. Faculty are often asked to speak at other universities and conferences, but rarely present at their home institution, this seminar series is an attempt to close that gap. The IBB Breakfast Club is open to anyone in the bio-community. Continental breakfast and coffee will be served.


  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created By: Colly Mitchell
  • Created: 06/29/2011
  • Modified By: Fletcher Moore
  • Modified: 10/07/2016

Target Audience