Prof Joel Mackay

Associate Investigator

The University of Sydney

AI Mackay’s research is focused on elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying mammalian gene regulation. Major outcomes include: (a) helping to
signal a paradigm shift in our understanding of the functional diversity of zinc-finger domains (PNAS, 80 cites; TiBS, 320 cites); and (b) determining the structure and molecular mechanism of action of the long postulated chaperone of alpha-globin, AHSP (Nature, 130 cites; Cell, 118 cites; J Clin Invest, 102 cites); (c) demonstrating that BET bromodomains can recognize acetylated transcription factors through a double-acetyllysine motif, establishing that histones are not the only target of BDs, and also that doubly acetylated motifs are important targets (PNAS, 120 cites; Mol Cell Biol, 70 cites). Recently, AI Mackay has focused on the design of peptide-based inhibitors of epigenetic gene regulatory proteins, making use of the RaPID peptide library screening strategy developed in the Suga lab and being brought to The University of Sydney through AI Toby Passioura.