Amy Chang

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Associate Professor

830 N. University

Office Location(s): 2116 Nat. Sci.
Lab Address: 2092 Nat. Sci.
Lab Phone: 734.647.7964
Phone: 734.647.7963
amychang@umich.edu
Chang Lab Website

  • Fields of Study
    • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • About

    Research in our lab is directed towards understanding basic mechanisms of intracellular protein targeting. We use the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae which allows for a combined genetic and biochemical approach. Currently, we are pursuing three major areas of interest. One project focuses on understanding the molecular mechanism of quality control at the endoplasmic reticulum (ER): only properly folded proteins of the secretory pathway are allowed to advance to the cell surface while proteins which fail to fold properly are targeted for ER-associated degradation by cytosolic proteasomes. We are interested in understanding how a protein in the process of folding normally is distinguished from a misfolded one. A second major project is centered on protein sorting in distal secretory and endocytic pathways. Evidence is accumulating in support of a post-ER quality control mechanism that recognizes and targets defective proteins to the endosomal/vacuolar pathway for degradation. A third major project addresses the role of lipid rafts in maintaining protein stability upon arrival at the plasma membrane. We are studying the inter-relationships of protein phosphorylation, ubiquitination, and lipid raft association. In addition to playing a crucial role in cell compartmentation, these processes are all implicated in human health, as a wide range of diseases are associated with defects in protein trafficking in the secretory pathway, including cystic fibrosis and familial hypercholesterolaemia.

    Dr. Chang received her PhD degree from Yale University and she did postdoctoral training at Yale University and the Whitehead Institute at MIT.

  • Areas of Focus
    • Biochemistry
    • Cell Biology