SB Scientist of the Month

Name: Michael Enos (he/him)

Position: Graduate Student in the Structural Biology Department

Research Group: Weis Lab

Current Research: I study the Wnt/beta-catenin pathway, a key developmental pathway that acts through stabilization of beta-catenin. Beta-catenin is constitutively expressed but is phosphorylated and then degraded by the beta-catenin destruction complex. I use biochemical, enzymatic, and structural techniques to dissect the molecular logic of signal transduction in this pathway. My current work focuses on the role of Axin, the core scaffold of the destruction complex. Axin binds tightly GSK-3, a kinase in the destruction complex that phosphorylates beta-catenin to mark it for degradation, which may help isolate the Wnt-regulated pool of GSK-3 from other substrates and signals. I am also examining whether Axin promotes beta-catenin phosphorylation by GSK-3 by binding both of them simultaneously and whether Axin allosterically inhibits GSK-3 when it cannot form this ternary complex

Additional Information: I enjoy reading (especially fantasy) and taking walks, for errands or for relaxation. I've recently defended and am looking forward to starting a postdoc at UT Southwestern after I wrap up here.