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Research: Cell Cycle Control

Chair & Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics
Pharmacology – a joint appointment
Equity and Inclusion Committee Member

(PhD – University of California, Berkeley)


Trained Faculty Mentor endorsed by Office of Graduate Ed UNC Chapel Hill

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  • W. M. Keck Foundation Award, 2015
  • Academy of Educators Elected Fellow, 2012
  • The Jefferson-Pilot Fellowship in Academic Medicine, 2010-2014
  • Academy of Educators Teaching Excellence Award, 2010
  • National Cancer Institute’s Howard Temin Award, 2003-2008


Cell Cycle Control in Human Cells
Our lab studies the regulation of the mammalian cell cycle with a particular focus on the cell cycle phase transitions related to DNA replication and to cell cycle exit.

photo of 4 cells Jean Cook research image for website

Cells coordinate progression through the cell division cycle with a wide variety of extracellular and intracellular information by regulating the activity and abundance of key cell cycle proteins.

Many proteins have more than one function in the cell cycle, and one of our goals is to understand how those different functions are integrated to preserve normal cell proliferation.

We manipulate cell cycle proteins in human cell lines using a variety of molecular genetic tools. We deplete proteins from cells using siRNA techniques, overproduce proteins using recombinant plasmid or viral vectors, and inhibit activities with pharmacological reagents. New projects employ live cell imaging and single cell analysis of protein abundance during the cell cycle. Ultimately we hope to achieve a greater understanding of normal cell cycle control so that future therapeutic tools related to regeneration and cancer treatment can be developed.
For more detailed information, as well as an introduction to the members of the Cook lab, visit our webpage:


  • cell proliferation dynamics
  • genome stability control
  • molecular biology
  • quantitative single cell analysis


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Lab Contact:

Lab Rooms: 3070G-H Genetic Medicine
Lab Phone: 919-966-3935
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