Kai Kessenbrock, PhD
|School||UCSF School of Dentistry|
|Department||Cell and Tissue Biology|
|Address||513 Parnassus Ave|
San Francisco CA 94143
|University of California, San Francisco||Postdoctoral Studies||School of Medicine/Department of Anatomy|
|Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology||Ph.D. thesis||2009|
|University of Heidelberg||Diploma||Molecular Biology||2003|
||2019||K99/R00 Pathway to Independence|
|NIH (Stem Cell/iPS Subcommittee)||2014||Finalist “Earl Stadtman Investigator“ Program|
|Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation||2009
|German Society for Immunology||2010||Hans Hench Prize for Clinical Immunology|
|Schering Foundation||2009||Avrion Mitchison Prize for Rheumatology|
|Rosa Laura and Hartmut Wekerle Foundation/Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology, Martinsried, Germany||2009||Outstanding Paper Award|
|Alexander von Humboldt Foundation||2008||Postdoctoral Fellowship|
My research is focused on microenvironmental control mechanisms that regulate inflammatory and stem cell behavior in normal homeostasis and disease.
My interest in microenvironmental control pathways grew out of my graduate and early postdoctoral work, where I concentrated on the role of neutrophil serine proteases as extracellular regulators of inflammation (Kessenbrock et al., 2008, J. Clin. Invest.) and as targets of autoimmunity (Kessenbrock et al., 2009, Nat. Med.).
My postdoctoral research in Zena Werb's lab at UCSF explored the concept that extracellular proteases such as the matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) may act as modulators of stem cell biology in normal tissue homeostasis and in the breast tumor microenvironment (Kessenbrock et al., 2010, Cell). My most recent work describes a novel molecular mechanism for the regulation of Wnt signaling and mammary stem cell function through MMP3 (Kessenbrock et al., 2013, Cell Stem Cell).
My current and future research will use systems-based approaches to study the spectrum of heterogeneity within epithelial stem cell populations on a single cell level and will identify novel niche components that extrinsically regulate stem cell behavior in the normal mammary gland and in breast cancer. Ultimately, my research may provide the rationale for the development of novel therapeutic approaches to treat patients suffering from breast cancer.
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