Environmental Sciences
Global

Environmental Sciences Experts

Tracy Handel

Non-Executive Chairman
Healthcare
Biotools Inc
Barbados

Biography

  Dr. Handel received her PhD in Chemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 1989 and did post-doctoral work in protein design/biophysics at E. I. Du Pont de Nemours with William DeGrado from 1989-1992. When Du Pont de Nemours became Du Pont Merck Pharmaceuticals, she was hired as a Principal Investigator and led an inflammatory disease group targeting the chemokine receptor CCR2, and initiated structural studies of its ligand MCP-1 (CCL2). In 1994 she joined the faculty of the Molecular and Cell Biology Department at the University of California Berkeley, where she continued to work on chemokines, particularly from a structural perspective focused on the ligands. After receiving tenure in 2000, Dr. Handel began pursuing structural studies of chemokine receptors, which was a daunting endeavor at the time. In 2005, she moved to the University of California San Diego (Skaggs School of Pharmacy and the Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine) and began collaborating with the GPCR Network on structural studies of chemokine receptors. Dr. Handel’s laboratory contributed to the first chemokine receptor structure to be determined: CXCR4 in complex with a small molecule inhibitor and a cyclic peptide antagonist. In 2015 her laboratory solved the first structure of a chemokine receptor in complex with a chemokine. Dr. Handel continues to pursue other complexes of chemokine receptors with both small molecules and natural ligands to support drug discovery efforts. Her laboratory is also conducting single molecule fluorescence studies of chemokine receptor dynamics, and cell biology, signaling and molecular modeling to leverage further information from our structural studies, and to better understand the complex behavior of these proteins in heath and in disease.    

Research Interest

  Dr. Handel received her PhD in Chemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 1989 and did post-doctoral work in protein design/biophysics at E. I. Du Pont de Nemours with William DeGrado from 1989-1992. When Du Pont de Nemours became Du Pont Merck Pharmaceuticals, she was hired as a Principal Investigator and led an inflammatory disease group targeting the chemokine receptor CCR2, and initiated structural studies of its ligand MCP-1 (CCL2). In 1994 she joined the faculty of the Molecular and Cell Biology Department at the University of California Berkeley, where she continued to work on chemokines, particularly from a structural perspective focused on the ligands. After receiving tenure in 2000, Dr. Handel began pursuing structural studies of chemokine receptors, which was a daunting endeavor at the time. In 2005, she moved to the University of California San Diego (Skaggs School of Pharmacy and the Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine) and began collaborating with the GPCR Network on structural studies of chemokine receptors. Dr. Handel’s laboratory contributed to the first chemokine receptor structure to be determined: CXCR4 in complex with a small molecule inhibitor and a cyclic peptide antagonist. In 2015 her laboratory solved the first structure of a chemokine receptor in complex with a chemokine. Dr. Handel continues to pursue other complexes of chemokine receptors with both small molecules and natural ligands to support drug discovery efforts. Her laboratory is also conducting single molecule fluorescence studies of chemokine receptor dynamics, and cell biology, signaling and molecular modeling to leverage further information from our structural studies, and to better understand the complex behavior of these proteins in heath and in disease.    

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