Pharmacologic inhibition of the c-Myc (Myc) oncoprotein

The Prochownik laboratory is interested in identifying and characterizing novel small molecule inhibitors of the Myc oncogenic transcription factor, which is commonly deregulated in many pediatric and adult cancers. Our approach has involved a variety of biological, biochemical, and biophysical techniques to study molecules that bind to the dimerization domain of Myc, alter its structure, and disrupt its interaction with Max­ — another transcription factor that is necessary for Myc-mediated transformation. We have identified a number of such molecules and mapped their binding sites on Myc. Current research efforts are aimed at characterizing new molecules and optimizing the properties of previously identified ones.