Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology

MSC03 2060
300 Terrace St. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001

Physical Location:
Clark Hall

Phone: 505-277-6655

  • UNM
  • >Home
  • >News & Events
  • >News
  • >Item
  • >Congratulations to Prof. Lina Cui

Congratulations to Prof. Lina Cui

posted: Fri Aug 04 2017 08:09:41

Please join the Chemistry Department in congratulating Assistant Prof. Lina Cui on her new NIH MIRA (R35) grant, "Probing the role of heparanase via in situ labeling". This grant will provide $1.25M in direct costs over five years to provide stable funding for a long-term research effort to define the precise role of heparanase in various pathological conditions.
      Heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs), major components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) of all tissue types, participate in the structural integrity of ECM and regulate cellular signaling via binding with ECM components and protein ligands such as growth factors and chemokines. Heparanase, the only known enzyme that can cleave the heparan sulfate (HS) side chains of HSPGs, regulates many cellular processes including ECM remodeling and homeostasis of cell- associated HS, and it controls the bioavailability and activity of molecules attached to HS.  Prof. Cui hypothesizes that heparanase cleaves HS side chains in a programmed manner – certain HS cleavage leads to cell dissemination, while cleavage of other specific HS structures is in charge of the release of specific signaling molecules, or homeostasis of HSPGs.  The current research focuses on the development of a set of molecular tools that allow the study of the structurally defined role of heparanase during ECM remodeling using molecular imaging both in vitro and in vivo.