BBS Faculty Member - James DeCaprio

James DeCaprio

Department of Medical Oncology

Dana Farber Cancer Institute
Mayer Bldg., Rm. 440
450 Brookline Ave.
Boston, MA 02215
Tel: 617-632-3825
Fax: 617-582-8601
Lab Members: 6 postdoctoral fellows
Visit my lab page here.

A major area of interest for our laboratory is viral related cancer and how oncogenic viral proteins enable the transformation of normal cells into cancer. We have particular interests in the polyoma viruses including SV40, the 9 human polyoma viruses including Merkel Cell Polyoma Virus and the many human papilloma viruses. We have found that expression of viral proteins has significant impact on the normal physiology of the cells including the cell cycle, signaling, and survival pathways. We are searching for additional mechanisms of viral induced transformation using a variety of approaches including identification of viral-host protein-protein interactions by mass spectroscopy and yeast two hybrid, genomic analysis of gene expression and copy number alterations in viral associated human cancers, development of conditional mouse knockin and knockout strains, and systems biology approach to identification of viral-host networks.

Another primary interest of our laboratory is the mammalian cell cycle with a particular focus on the role of the retinoblastoma family of tumor suppressors. The retinoblastoma family includes Rb1, p107 and p130. We recently identified the DREAM complex that contains DP1, Rb-related protein p130, E2F4 and the MuvB core complex of five proteins (LIN9, LIN37, LIN52 LIN54 and RBBP4). We have demonstrated that the DREAM complex is at the center of the cellular response of quiescence and senescence and serves as a repressor to hundreds of cell cycle genes. Using mass-spectroscopy, expression profiling, chromatin immunoprecipitation and CHIP-Seq we are searching for additional factors that control the cell cycle. We are combining these molecular insights with genomic analysis of relevant human cancers to identify novel tumor suppressors and oncogenes.

Last Update: 5/28/2013


For a complete listing of publications click here.



Litovchick L, Florens LA, Swanson SK, Washburn MP, DeCaprio JA. DYRK1A protein kinase promotes quiescence and senescence through DREAM complex assembly. Genes Dev. 2011 Apr 15;25(8):801-13.

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