LAB NEWS & UPDATES
July 1, 2021
The lab has received another National Cancer Institute R21. This award is titled "Therapeutic Potential of Targeting DNA Repair Deficiency in TSC." Our research will investigate the therapeutic potential of drugs targeting both germline DNA damage repair mutations and somatic mutations in the mTOR pathway. This work is important for human health, as we will determine if DNA repair defects may create a unique therapeutic opportunity for patients with mTOR-driven tumors.
March 1, 2021
Robert Vaughan, Ph.D. joined the lab in March, bringing with him a prestigious K00 award from the NCI. Rob's postdoctoral studies will focus on identifying genetic modifiers that may cause some tuberous sclerosis patients to have more severe brain tumors than others. Rob will leverage several tools for his research including: genomics data, genome editing, three-dimensional cell models, and metabolic profiling.
March 1, 2021
The lab has been awarded an R21 from the National Cancer Institute titled "Evaluating a Novel Autophagy Inhibitor in KRAS-Driven Lung Cancer." This project focuses on ULK-101 - a novel small molecule inhibitor that suppresses autophagy and sensitizes lung cancer cells to therapeutic stress. Our research will evaluate the therapeutic potential of ULK-101 and provide essential proof of concept data to support the clinical development autophagy inhibitors.
November 20, 2020
Now a pediatric hematology and oncology fellow at Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children's Hospital, Dave Hoogstra was impacted by his father's role as a pediatrician. As a child, Dave witnessed the compassion that his father (Dr. Jeffrey Hoogstra) brought to his work. Dave now combines compassion and expertise to treat the young cancer patients in his care.
November 4, 2020
The lab is partnering with Atomwise via their AIMS Awards program to identify novel targets within the autophagy pathway. The work involves virtual screening completed by Atomwise, and biological analysis and validation by our team. Read more about this project on the Atomwise blog by clicking here.
July 1, 2020
Natalie Niemi, a former graduate student in the lab, has started an an Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics at Washington University in St. Louis. Prior to her faculty position, Dr. Niemi was an Assistant Scientist in the Pagliarini Lab at the University of Wisconsin Madison. While in the Pagliarini lab, Natalie contributed to several high impact publications and received a postdoctoral fellowship from the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation.
February 29, 2020
Calvin University, Spectrum Health, and Michigan State University hosted a Rare Disease Day symposium at Calvin. The event attracted ~400 attendees, including patients, caregivers, clinicians, and researchers. The symposium featured talks from patient advocates and physicians. Jeff helped lead a breakout session on rare disease research that focused on technologies and treatments.
February 21, 2020
Michigan State University released a new website highlighting cancer research at MSU. The site, cancer.msu.edu, includes profiles of nearly 100 faculty members, research areas, sample cancer courses, and news. Jeff and Nicole worked for several months with colleagues in the College of Human Medicine to develop the site, which illustrates MSU's strong cancer research presence.
JEFF TO PRESENT AT INTERNATIONAL TUBEROUS SCLEROSIS COMPLEX RESEARCH CONFERENCE
May 23, 2019
Jeff has been invited to present at this year’s world TSC research conference in Toronto, Canada. The conference is from June 20-22, and Jeff will be speaking on June 22 about preclinical models of TSC and evaluating small molecule inhibitors.
JESSICA GUILLAUME ATTENDING UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO PRITZKER SCHOOL OF MEDICINE
May 14, 2019
Jess Guillaume, former Research Assistant in the lab, will be pursuing her M.D. at University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine. She was accepted at several prestigious medical schools, but ultimately selected the University of Chicago given the school's close integration of science and clinical medicine. Jess will join the University of Chicago in August 2019.
LAB PUBLISHES 2 RESEARCH PAPERS IN THE NEW CELL PRESS JOURNAL, iScience
April 23, 2019
The lab has authored two recent papers providing insights for targeting autophagy in cancer. The first publication, titled “A Potent and Selective ULK1 Inhibitor Suppresses Autophagy and Sensitizes Cancer Cells to Nutrient Stress” was published online September 19, 2018. The second publication is titled “Identification of Kinases Responsible for p53- Dependent Autophagy” and is available online today. Both articles are published in the new Cell Press journal, iScience – an interdisciplinary open access journal.
LISETTE YCO, M.S. SUCCESSFULLY DEFENDS MASTER’S THESIS
April 11, 2019
Lisette Yco joined the MacKeigan Lab in 2016 as a graduate student and studied the therapeutic potential of targeting autophagy in non-small cell lung cancer. She has successfully defended her thesis and earned a Master’s degree in Physiology from Michigan State University. Lisette will now be pursuing a research career on the West Coast.
DR. LAURA WESTRATE JOINS CALVIN COLLEGE FACULTY
August 20, 2018
Lab alumna, Laura Westrate, has returned to West Michigan after completing her postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Gia Voeltz at the University of Colorado Boulder. Laura begins as an Assistant Professor at Calvin College this month. During her time in the Voeltz Lab, Laura co-authored a Nature publication and was awarded a prestigious F32 fellowship award from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences.
ABBEY SOLITRO BEGINS FACULTY POSITION AT LIBERTY UNIVERSITY
August 1, 2018
After concluding her dissertation research in the MacKeigan Lab and earning her Ph.D., Abbey has joined the faculty at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Liberty enrollment exceeds 100,000 and the university offers 600+ programs.
JEFF SPEAKS AT CALVIN COLLEGE FOR 1ST ANNUAL RARE DISEASE SYMPOSIUM
March 3, 2018
In honor of Rare Disease Day, Calvin College hosted a symposium for students, community members, and rare disease patients. During this half day meeting, Jeff shared the lab's current work on tuberous sclerosis complex - a rare disease affecting ~50,000 Americans.
LAB MOVES TO NEW MSU COLLEGE OF HUMAN MEDICINE GRAND RAPIDS RESEARCH CENTER
November 22, 2017
The MacKeigan Lab has officially moved into the new GRRC building at 400 Monroe NW. We're excited to join MSU's College of Human Medicine and contribute to the CHM's goal of positively impacting human health. SPARTANS WILL.
October 20, 2017
Jeff was included as one of this year's MSURx speakers, giving alumni and community members insights into cancer research. In "A Bold Guess into Cancer's Complexity" Jeff describes one of the lab's innovative projects and shares his own personal story.
June 15, 2017
The lab has published a comprehensive genomics study of TSC. TSC is caused by mutations in the TSC1 and TSC2 genes, which suppress tumor growth. When these genes are mutated, tumors form in major organs causing clinical complications such as epilepsy and renal failure.
May 1, 2017
After eleven years at Van Andel Research Institute, the lab will be moving to Michigan State University's new Grand Rapids Research Center.
November 4, 2016
Jeff and Caryl Sortwell have been collaborating for several years to determine whether fasudil, a drug used to treat cerebral vasospasms, can slow the progression of Parkinson's Disease. Check out their story on MSU Today.
KRISTIN DITTENHAFER-REED, PH.D. TO JOIN HOPE COLLEGE FACULTY
Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed, a postdoctoral fellow in the lab, will be joining Hope College in August as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry. Dr. Dittenhafer-Reed’s lab at Hope will investigate the biochemical mechanisms driving mitochondrial function and metabolism in human health and disease.
VAN ANDEL RESEARCH INSTITUTE AND LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL LABORATORY MODEL COMPLEX CANCER CELL BEHAVIOR
September 14, 2015
NATE LANNING, PH.D. JOINS FACULTY AT CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
Dr. Nate Lanning has accepted a position at California State University Los Angeles, and will be starting this month as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences. At CSU, Nate’s lab will focus on mapping mitochondrial proteins and functions to human disease.
BRENDAN LOOYENGA, PH.D. BEGINS FACULTY POSITION AT CALVIN COLLEGE
Dr. Brendan Looyenga, a former Research Scientist in the lab, joins Calvin College this month as an Assistant Professor. Brendan will be appointed within the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry where his research will focus on papillary renal cell carcinoma (RCC), specifically investigating the interaction between these tumor cells and normal cells in the kidney.