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Tom A. Rapoport, PhD

Professor, Department of Cell Biology, Harvard Medical School

Contact Info

Tom Rapoport
Harvard Medical School
240 Longwood Avenue
Boston, MA, 02115
Mailstop: LHRRB 613
Phone: 617-432-0637
Fax: 617-432-1190
tom_rapoport@hms.harvard.edu

Assistant

Lorna Fargo
Administrative Assistant
Cell Biology
Harvard Medical School
240 Longwood Avenue
Boston, MA, 02115
Phone: 617-432-0676
Fax: 617-432-1190
lorna_fargo@hms.harvard.edu

DF/HCC Program Affiliation

Cancer Cell Biology

Research Abstract

The lab is interested in how proteins cross membranes, how they fold, and
how they are modified, particularly how dilsulfide bridges are formed. We
have determined the X-ray structure of the protein-conducting channel that
allows proteins to move from the cytosol across the ER membrane or to
integrate into the membrane. We are now using the structure to adress the
mechanism of protein translocation in more detail. Another project in the
lab concerns the mechanism by which proteins are transported from the ER
lumen back into the cytosol (retro-translocation). Finally, we are
interested in the mechanism by which dilsulfide bridges are formed and by
which wrongly formed disulfide bridges are corrected. In particular, we wish
to determine the X-ray structure of a homolog of an enzyme that moves
reduction equivalents across the membrane (CcdA). All these projects have a
high relevance to cancer research. For example, our research addresses how
growth factors are secreted from cells and how tyrosine kinases are
integrated into membranes.

Publications

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