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Biochemistry
Faculty Profile

Kenneth B. Marcu, Ph.D.

Professor
Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Microbiology & Pathology Stony Brook University

And
Senior Scientist (and Adjunct Professor, Univ. of Bologna)
Laboratory of Immuno-Rheumatology and Tissue Regeneration/RAMSES
Rizzoli Orthopedic Research Institute
40136 Bologna, Italy
Foreign Member
IMBB-FORTH (Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology of the Foundation for Research and Technology), Greece
USA Contact Information:
Biochemistry and Cell Biology Dept.
Life Sciences Rm. 326 and 330
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794-5215
Lab telephone: 631-632-8553
Fax: 631-632-9730
E-mail: kenneth.marcu@stonybrook.edu
Other Links  

Osteoarthritic disease and Regenerative Medicine at the Rizzoli Research Institute (Bologna, Italy):
http://www.ior.it/immunologia
NF-κΒ signaling in DNA damage & cellular senescence responses at the FORTH BRI (Ioannina, Greece)
Europe E mail: kenneth.marcu@unibo.it


Research Projects (USA and Europe)

My research projects are ongoing concurrently in the United States and Europe. I direct and co-direct multiple research projects at Stony Brook University and several other research institutions in USA and Europe on a year round basis with Stony Brook University representing my principle, institutional base. In addition to my activities at Stony Brook University, I am also simultaneously engaged in several other research projects based at the Rizzoli Orthopedic Research Institute (affiliate with the University of Bologna in Bologna, Italy) and also at the IMBB-FORTH Biomedical Research Institute. IMBB-FORTH is affiliated with multiple University’s and Medical Schools in Greece; and Dr. Evangelos Kolettas is my main collaborator at the Institute based at the Ioannina Medical School, Ioannina, Greece. My research involves the regulation and mechanisms of action of the inhibitor of NF-κB kinase (IKK) complex. The IKK signaling complex is essential for the activation of the NF-κB transcription factor family, which regulate stress-like responses, innate and adaptive immunity and the survival and growth of normal and malignant cells. Moreover, the IKKβ and IKKα serine threonine kinases in the IKK signalsome also functionally impact on a number of other NF-κB independent growth and differentiation pathways in various cell types. My research is focused on elucidating novel in vivo mechanism(s) of action of IKKα and how IKKα’s functions collaborate with or differ from with those of its NF-κB activating partner kinase IKKβ. Together with colleagues and collaborators in the States and Europe we are exploring the functional roles and mechanisms of action of IKKα and IKKβ in different disease-related biological contexts including: (1) novel cell migration responses specifically elicited in response to tissue damage initially invoking a pronounced inflammatory reaction that can eventually give way to tissue repair via the recruitment of progenitor, stem cells, (2) gene expression and epigenomic regulation associated with the maintenance of articular chondrocyte homeostasis and/or differentiation programming and mechanical and pro-inflammatory stress that can lead to osteoarthritic disease, (3) alterations in gene expression programming in response to specific forms of extracellular stress including pro-inflammatory oncogenic events leading to DNA damage and premature cellular senescence and (4) specific alterations in cellular physiology that occur in cancer cell genesis and progression associated with an epithelial to mesenchymal cell transition in hypoxic tissue environments


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