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Project Information
Project Title:  Role of the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) in stress resistance and cancer
Period:  from: 2009-07-01 to: 2014-06-30  
Principal Investigator(s): Jones, Russell Graham  
Co-Investigators:  
Supervisors:  
Previous Investigators/Supervisors:  
Institution: McGill University  
Department: Physiology 
Program: CIHR New Investigator 
Assigned PRC: NIA 
Primary Institute: Cancer Research 
Primary Theme: Biomedical 
Keywords: AGING, AMP-ACTIVATED PROTEIN KINASE (AMPK), APOPTOSIS, CANCER, CANCER BIOLOGY, CELLULAR METABOLISM, P53, TUMOUR SUPPRESSORS, VIEILLISSEMENT 
Abstract: Cell division is a highly regulated process. The ability of a cell to successfully grow and divide partly depends on the cell having enough energy and building blocks to complete the task. Cancer is essentially a disease in which cells lose their normal restraints on cell division. Cancer cells often display fundamental changes in energy generation and metabolism to allow them to grow and divide, although our understanding of how cancer cells achieve this is poor. The strategy of our lab has been to investigate how metabolism and energy use is altered in tumours in the hope of identifying new ways to treat cancer. We have identified a key regulator of cellular metabolism known as the AMP-activated protein kinase, or AMPK. We have found that AMPK acts as a rheostat in cells, and stops cell growth and division when it senses changes in energy levels. AMPK does so in part by interacting with several well-known tumour suppressors including p53, which is mutated in over 50% of human cancers. This proposal aims to study how AMPK helps cells adapt to environmental stress, and to study the role AMPK may play in cancer progression. Ultimately we would like to determine whether AMPK is a suitable therapeutic target for the treatment of cancer. 

Funding Information
Fiscal Year Amount
2009-10 $45,000
2010-11 $60,000
2011-12 $60,000
2012-13 $60,000
2013-14 $60,000
2014-15 $15,000
Total: $300,000