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Sarah Hall Defends her M.S. Thesis

Sarah Hall (M.S. in Pathology) successfully defended her thesis entitled Characterizing the Contribution of Hippo Pathway Dysregulation to Sarcomagenesis this past June. Sarah performed her thesis work in the laboratory of Dr. Munir Tanas. The Hippo pathway is a series of serine/threonine kinases that negatively regulate the transcriptional coactivators TAZ and YAP. Should this negative control be lost, TAZ and YAP have the potential to promote oncogeneis. Sarah evaluated various mechanisms by which loss of expression of the Hippo kinases occurs in sarcomas utilizing clinical samples and various sarcoma cell lines. She was able to show that expression of the Hippo kinases is regulated by epigenetic mechanisms as well as proteasome-mediated degradation. In addition to Dr. Tanas, Drs. Ann Simons-Burnett and Weizhou Zhang served on Sarah’s thesis committee. Following graduation, Sarah will pursue a career in industry/biotechnology.