Serendipitous discovery leads to a new understanding of how cells multitask

Quantitative Biosciences Institute (QBI) researchers at UC San Francisco have discovered a new paradigm for how fundamental biological switches, proteins that can be turned on and off to control processes like cell differentiation, cell growth, and transport within a cell, are regulated at the molecular level, specifically by molecules binding at newly discovered sites far away from the main binding site, and the broader impacts these changes have on a cellular level. This work highlights both a new understanding of how disease mutations may operate and also a possibility for a new class of therapeutic molecules to target switches that often misfunction in disease.