Protein kinase MAP3K7, known as TAK1, is a member of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase (MAPKKK) and plays a major role in inflammation. TAK1 activates mitogen-activated kinase (MAPK) cascades and IκB kinase-NF-κB pathways, but also modulates other molecules.
We are characterizing tissue-specific Tak1-deficient mouse models, and have found that TAK1 is critical in mediating inflammation not only through eliciting cytokine/chemokine productions but also through modulating cell survival and energy metabolism.
Our current research is focused on;
understanding the molecular mechanisms by which TAK1 is activated and deactivated in healthy tissues;
identification of how aberrant TAK1 activity is associated with human diseases.