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Dec 15, 2016

Seminar - AMP-activated Protein Kinase - Sensing Glucose Availability by an AMP-independent Mechanism (Speaker: Professor D. Grahame Hardie)

Professor D. Grahame Hardie
Professor of Cellular Signalling
Division of Cell Signalling & Immunology
College of Life Sciences
University of Dundee, Scotland, UK

Date: Thursday, 15-December-2016
Time: 11:00 a.m.
Venue: Room A2-08, Mrs Chen Yang Foo Oi Telemedicine Centre 
2/F, William MW Mong Block, Faculty of Medicine Building 
21 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam, Hong Kong


The AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is an ancient signalling pathway that most likely arose, along with the target-of-rapamycin (TOR) pathway, during the very early evolution of eukaryotic cells. Although its role in mammalian cells is usually thought of as an energy sensor, studies of its role in other eukaryotes suggest that it may have evolved as a sensor of glucose availability instead. Glucose removal from mammalian cells does activate AMPK, and it had been thought that this occurred because this nutrient stress causes a drop in cellular energy levels. However, recent studies in our laboratory show that this is not necessarily the case, and that glucose removal can activate AMPK by a non-canonical mechanism without any changes in cellular adenine nucleotides. Our progress in understanding this mechanism will be discussed.