Signaling is the biochemical process cells use to make decisions about virtually everything they do – migrate, differentiate, survive, die, and more. Signaling involves networks of intracellular proteins whose concentrations, modification states, or localization change in response to events such as receptor-ligand binding. Cells interpret these signaling network changes, using rules scientists are only beginning to decipher, to execute decision processes. While proper signaling is critical to normal development and health, aberrant signaling leads to numerous diseases, including cancer. Thus, the ability to engineer signaling processes or intervene effectively in aberrant signaling has huge medical implications.

The Lazzara Lab uses systems biology and data science approaches to study problems in cell signaling. We are employing a variety of experimental and computational approaches to design better combination therapies for cancer, probe cancer cell signaling in the tumor microenvironment, and dissect the multiscale biophysical mechanisms that enable signaling to occur.

Open Positions

The Lazzara Lab seeks enthusiastic applicants to fill an open position for a postdoctoral research associate or graduate research assistant to work on a newly funded collaborative NIH R01 project that integrates elements of protein engineering, cell signaling systems biology, and data sciences. Candidates should send a current c.v. to mlazzara@virginia.edu.


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Our new paper entitled "Data-driven computational modeling identifies determinants of glioblastoma response to SHP2 inhibition" is now published online in Cancer Research. Congratulations to first author Evan Day! [Feb 2021]

Our new paper entitled "ERK-dependent suicide gene therapy for selective targeting of RTK/RAS-driven cancers" has been published online by Molecular Therapy. Congratulations to first author Evan Day! [Dec 2020]

Matt Lazzara and colleague Damien Thévenin (Lehigh University) were awarded a new multi-PI NIGMS R01 to study signaling regulation by receptor-like protein tyrosine phosphatases. [Aug 2020]

Matt Lazzara and colleague BJ Purow (UVA Neurology) were awarded a new multi-PI NCI R21 to engineer new suicide gene therapies for cancer. [Aug 2020]