The phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway is a master regulator of numerous cellular phenotypes associated with cancer including cell survival, proliferation, growth, altered metabolism and malignant transformation. Deregulation of the PI3K pathway is implicated in virtually all human cancers and the pathway has been aggressively targeted for cancer therapy. Although most work has focused on the Akt kinase family as major downstream effectors of PI3K, the closely related serum- and glucocorticoid-regulated kinase (SGK) family of serine/threonine kinases has by comparison received little attention.
Recently, SGK1 has been shown to play a critical role in driving the expansion of tumour cells and promoting resistance to conventional chemotherapy and targeted therapy agents. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the oncogenic activities of SGK1 are poorly characterised. In this project, we will identify SGK1 substrates and interacting proteins using the proximity-dependent biotin identification (BioID) method. Students will gain experience in mammalian cell culture and proteomics (mass spectrometry) techniques. Targets identified in the BioID screen will be validated using a variety of biochemical and molecular biology techniques.
The Brown laboratory investigates mechanisms that drive resistance to chemotherapy and targeted therapy agents in breast cancer.
This knowledge is applied to the pre-clinical development of novel and more effective interventions for breast cancer therapy. https://www.petermac.org/research/labs/kristin-brown
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne Australia
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre is Australia’s only public hospital solely dedicated to cancer, and home to the largest cancer research group in Australia. Cancer is a complex set of diseases, and modern cancer research institutes such as Peter Mac conduct research covering a diversity of topics that range from laboratory-based studies into the fundamental mechanisms of cell growth, translational studies that seek more accurate cancer diagnosis, clinical trials with novel treatments, and research aimed to improve supportive care.
All students engaged in postgraduate studies at Peter Mac are enrolled in the Comprehensive Cancer PhD (CCPhD) program, regardless of which university they are enrolled through. The program is managed by the Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology (The University of Melbourne), based at Peter Mac.
Tapping into the depth and breadth of knowledge and experience offered by the ten partners of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre (VCCC) alliance, the University of Melbourne’s Comprehensive Cancer PhD Program provides a unique opportunity for multidisciplinary cancer-related PhD candidates to experience clinical and research activities across the alliance.
The Comprehensive Cancer PhD program builds on established conventional training for cancer research students providing a coordinated program of skills, research and career training in addition to usual PhD activities. The program is designed to complement existing PhD activities and provides opportunities to develop professional skills that will help candidates to fulfil their career ambitions https://www.petermac.org/education/comprehensive-cancer-phd-program
All PhD students at Peter Mac must have a scholarship from The University of Melbourne or through another government, trust or philanthropic organisation. Before applying for a scholarship, you must have agreed on a project with an institute supervisor.
For further information about the university application process, see:
For further information regarding scholarships (both local and international), see:
Closing dates for applications for scholarships to commence in 2019: Round 1 -31 October 2018; Round 2 - 28 Nov 2018; Round 3 - 20 Feb 2019.