"I feel privileged to work in a stimulating and collaborative environment as part of an organization that strives to provide meaningful treatment of human disease."
I joined Genentech in September of 2002 as an Associate Scientist in the Protein Chemistry Department. At that time, and today, Genentech places tremendous value on the collaboration between the therapeutic and Protein Science groups to facilitate the development of novel therapeutics.
Part of the reward and challenge of working at Genentech is the creativity and flexibility that is expected of our researchers. Our project teams are constantly working to evaluate topics from a broad perspective. Our researchers are, in turn, expected to effectively address a variety of topics. Early in my career, my lab focused on the identification of novel inhibitors of the Hedgehog and Wnt pathways and small molecule inhibitors to prevent ubiquitination of the proto-oncogene p53. More recently, my group has added a focus on neurodegeneration, metabolic disease and antibody-drug conjugates.
EBioMedicine. 2015 May 30;2(7):730-43.
My group develops large molecules, antibodies and engineered proteins, as therapeutics. Recently our work has focused not only on identification of therapeutic antibody candidates, but also on selective delivery of therapeutics to specific organs or tissues. One exciting outcome of this research was testing blood brain barrier penetration, a result of our collaboration with the neurodegeneration group. Another example is our work with the metabolic disease group to selectively activate receptors to improve glucose uptake in target tissues.
Identification of a potential therapeutic often proceeds hand-in-hand with efforts to understand the molecular role of the drug target in disease. To better understand the function of the amyloid protein Abeta and Tau in Alzheimer's disease, my group is studying the aggregation properties of these proteins and is working with the neurodegeneration department to understand how aggregation of Abeta and Tau impacts neuronal death. Recently the lab also initiated efforts to help develop a new generation of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) for cancer treatment.