Tracey Barrett

Lecturer in Structural Biology
School of Crystallography
Birkbeck College, Malet Street
London WC1E 7HX

phone: +44 (0)20 7631 6822
fax: +44 (0)20 7631 6803








Our major interests include the NF-κB transcriptional pathways that are central to diverse cellular processes such as developmental switching, cell death and immunity. Owing to their importance, aberrant activation of these normally tightly regulated mechanisms has been linked to several pathologies including a range of human cancers and inflammation. Both pathways can be inappropriately stimulated when their normal "control" mechanisms breakdown as a direct result of mutations within key regulatory proteins. This has also been shown to occur in response to infection by certain viruses such as the Kaposi's Sarcoma Herpes virus, the main causal agent of AIDS related cancer, and the Human T-cell leukaemia virus HTLV-1 (responsible for an aggressive form of T-cell leukaemia in adults). Both viruses produce host mimetic proteins that use a number of elegant strategies to "hijack" the NF-κB pathways that as a result are permanently "switched on" or constitutively activated. We therefore seek to understand the molecular basis underlying viral oncoprotein mediated constitutive activation by determining the crystal structures of key protein-protein complexes. We also have interests in the area of DNA repair with ongoing projects in prokaryotic excision repair mechanisms, eukaryotic homologous recombination and replication.


Positions held


1995-1998Postdoctoral Research Fellow at NIMR (Mill Hill) and UCL
1998-2003BBSRC David Phillips Career Development Research Fellow
2003- Lecturer in Structural Biology