MBPhD Programme


DIREKZE, Shamindra Gerald



Current Position:

Qualified 2007

PhD title:

"Characterisation of Transcriptional Mediator Subunit, MED17 and its Regulation by Cyclins"

Principal Supervisor:

Prof Chris Boshoff

Funding Source:

Astor Foundation

Description of Project:

MED17 is a subunit of the general transcription co-factor complex, Mediator, and interacts with the p53 tumour suppressor protein, to unknown effect. We identified an interaction between MED17 and an oncogenic viral cyclin in a yeast-2-hybrid screen, suggesting that cyclins, through MED17, may regulate the anti-tumourigenic effects of p53. I have shown that MED17 is a repressor of p53 transcriptional activity. Furthermore, MED17 is phosphorylated by viral and cellular cyclin/kinase complexes to regulate MED17 expression. These data suggests a novel link between cyclins and p53 transcriptional activity, via MED17, which may be deregulated during tumourigenesis.

PubMed-accessible Publications:

Direkze,S . & Laman,H. (2004) Regulation of growth signalling and cell cycle by Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus genes. Int.J.Exp.Pathol., 85, 305-319.