Molecular Biology

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Chris Garcia

Molecular & Cellular Physiology
Stanford University
United States of America


He is working as Professor, Molecular & Cellular Physiology and Structural Biology Member of Bio-X, Stanford Cancer Institute, Stanford Neurosciences Institute. Faculty Fellow of Stanford ChEM-H.

Research Interest

My laboratory studies the structural and functional basis of receptor/ligand interactions in systems which are relevant to human health and disease. Our investigations are aimed at understanding the molecular recognition properties governing the interactions of receptors with their ligands, and the subsequent molecular events which couple ligand recognition to receptor activation. Many of the systems we are studying in the laboratory are related to the interaction of the host with the environment. The structural studies are complemented by functional approaches using molecular biology and protein engineering to dissect the structural information, design new or altered proteins with modified specificities and activities, and ultimately contribute to the development of proteins or molecules with therapeutic potential. Molecules currently under study include receptors of the immune system involved in autoimmune disorders (T cell receptors, co-receptors, MHC, cytokines), proteins involved in host-pathogen interactions and molecular mimicry (CMV and Toxoplasma surface antigens), proteins of nervous system (peptide hormone receptors, neural guidance proteins), and membrane proteins (chemokine receptors). An emerging focus of our research is to develop. using combinatorial biology approaches, novel ligands for receptors, which may have altered activities, that may serve as therapeutic starting points.


  • Wang X, Lupardus P, LaPorte SL, Garcia KC (2009) Structural Biology of Shared Cytokine Receptors. ANNUAL REVIEW OF IMMUNOLOGY 27: 29-60.

  • Garcia KC, Adams JJ, Feng D, Ely LK (2009) The molecular basis of TCR germline bias for MHC is surprisingly simple. NATURE IMMUNOLOGY 10: 143-147.

  • Pei J, Lupardus PJ, Garcia KC, Grishin NV (2009) CPDadh: A new peptidase family homologous to the cysteine protease domain in bacterial MARTX toxins PROTEIN SCIENCE 18: 856-862.

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