Marilyn G. Farquhar, Ph.D.

Marilyn G. Farquhar, Ph.D.

  • Distinguished Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine
  • Professor of Pathology
  • Ph.D. - University of California, Berkeley

Research Interests

The main interests of our cell biology lab are focused on the interplay between cell signaling and protein trafficking. Recently we have discovered a number of molecules involved in novel G-protein mediated signaling pathways, including GAIP, RGS-PX1, GIPC, GIPN and calnuc. These new proteins serve to modulate G protein signaling and to link G-protein signaling to growth factor receptor trafficking. To define the molecular mechanisms and signaling networks involved we are using a combination of molecular (yeast two hybrid, phage display), proteomics (mass spec), biochemical (cell fractionation, in vitro assays), bioinformatics, and morphologic (immunofluorescence, immunoelectron microscopy, confocal and deconvolution microscopy) approaches to study a variety of mammalian systems including cells in culture, mouse mutants and mammalian tissues. Another long standing interest of our lab is in understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of glomerular filtration and protein absorption under normal and pathogenic conditions. Our current research in this area focuses on trafficking and signaling of megalin-- an endocytic receptor involved in protein absorption and signaling, the role of podocalyxin in the regulation of the podocyte's architecture in normal and nephrotic animals and the interactions and pathology of nephrin.

Representative Publications

  1. Zhang YW, Luo WJ, Wang H, Lin P, Vetrivel KS, Liao F, Li F, Wong PC, Farquhar MG, Thinakaran G, Xu H. 2005. Nicastrin is critical for stability and trafficking but not association of other presenilin/g-secretase components. J. Biol. Chem. 280:17020-17026.
  2. Lehtonen, S., Ryan, J. J, Kudlicka, K., Iino, N., Zhou, H., and M. G. Farquhar. 2005. Cell junction-associated proteins IQGAP1, MAGI-2, CASK, spectrins, and alpha-actinin are components of the nephrin multiprotein complex. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 102:9814-19.
  3. Head, B. P., Patel, H. H., Roth, D. M., Niesman, I. R., Farquhar, M. G. and P. A. Insel. 2005. G-protein-coupled receptor signaling components localize in both sarcolemmal and intracellular caveolin-3-associated microdomains in adult cardiac myocytes. J. Biol. Chem. 280: 31036-44.
  4. Head BP, Patel HH, Roth DM, Murray F, Swaney JS, Niesman IR, Farquhar MG, Insel PA. Microtubules and actin microfilaments regulate lipid raft/caveolae localization of adenylyl cyclase signaling components. J Biol Chem. 2006 Jul 3; PMID: 16818493
  5. Farquhar, MG 2006. The glomerular basement membrane: not gone, just forgotten. Commentary, J. Clin. Invest. 116:2090-2093 . doi:10.1172/JCI29488.
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Marilyn Gist Farquhar received her A.B. degree in Zoology, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Experimental Pathology from the University of California Berkeley and San Francisco. Academic history: Postdoctoral fellow at the University of Minnesota, the University of California San Francisco, and Rockefeller University; Professor of Pathology at the UCSF School of Medicine, Professor of Cell Biology at Rockefeller University, and Sterling Professor of Cell Biology at Yale University School of Medicine. Currently she is Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and Pathology, and Chair, Department of Cellular & Molecular Medicine at the UCSD School of Medicine. Her accomplishments include the following: member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; received the Wilson Medal of the American Society of Cell Biologists, the Homer Smith Medal of the American Society of Nephrology, the Distinguished Scientist Medal of the EMSA, the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Research (UCSD); the Rous-Whipple Award of the American Society for Investigative Pathology; the Carl Gottschalk Prize from University of North Carolina; the A.N. Richards Award for Excellence in Research from the International Society of Nephrology; charter member of the ASCB; twice on the ASCB's Council, and once as President; served on the editorial boards of the Journal of Cell Biology, Molecular Endocrinology, Journal of Clinical Investigation and Molecular Medicine and currently serves on the Editorial Board of Molecular Biology of the Cell and as Associate Editor of the Journal of Histchemistry and Cytochemistry. Her research is supported by grants from the NIH (NIDDK and NCI).

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