To view a free Chem. and Eng. News "Webinar" in which Marty describes the group's research see: http://pubs.acs.org/cen/webinar/webinar-sigma.html
Human diseases caused by an excess of protein function can often be treated effectively using small molecules that bind to the offending proteins and turn them off. In contrast, diseases caused by protein deficiencies are generally refractory to this approach, and thus most of these diseases remain incurable with modern medicine. The Burke group therefore aims to advance the frontiers of pharmacology towards molecular prosthetics, i.e., functional small molecules that serve as substitutes for missing or dysfunctional proteins that underlie currently incurable human diseases. In this context, our research focuses on the synthesis and study of small molecules with protein-like functions. To enable these studies, we are developing new strategies and methods with the goal of making the process of complex small molecule synthesis as simple, efficient, and flexible as possible. We further aim to harness the power of this chemistry to illuminate the fundamental underpinnings of higher-order small molecule function in atomistic detail. Collectively, these efforts seek to make possible the development of molecular prosthetics as a general strategy for the understanding and betterment of human health.
The discovery engine in our group is organic synthesis, and individual projects
generally fall within the following key areas (Click on any of the following links
Creating new strategies and methods for small molecule
Synthesizing small molecules with the capacity for higher-order,
Harnessing the power of synthesis to illuminate the
atomistic underpinnings of small molecule function