Robin De Backer
Doctoral fellow - Unit for Structural Biology and Biophysics, VIB-Ugent Center for Inflammation Research and Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, UGent
Principal investigator: prof. Savvas Savvides (PhD)
The aim of my research is to contribute to the design of therapeutic strategies to target transcription factors involved in leukemia pathways with a focus on acute leukemia. Transcription factors have long been regarded as “undruggable”. However, advances in the field, in particular approaching such a challenge via a combination of medicinal and computational chemistry and structural biology together with appropriate cellular studies, have made the targeting of transcription factors a more tractable problem. Thus, we will work as part of an interdisciplinary consortium to develop lead compounds with anti-leukemic properties against therapeutically validated transcription factors in acute leukemia. My key focus is the structural biology approach where insights in the structure of involved proteins will be used to perform structure-based hit optimization.