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Matthew C.T. Hartman

Lab website

Education
B.S., Wheaton College, 1997
Ph.D., University of Michigan, 2002
Postdoctoral Research, Harvard University, 2002-2006

Honors and Awards

Outstanding Undergraduate Research Mentor Award, 2012

Research Interests

We are pursuing several different areas of cancer chemical biology research.

Protein-protein interaction inhibitors

Traditional small molecule drug discovery for protein-protein interaction inhibitors has routinely disappointed.  The Hartman Lab has developed a powerful process for the development of inhibitors of protein-protein interactions that involves a technique known as mRNA display.  The power of this approach is that we can effectively search for inhibitors from cyclic peptide libraries containing over 1013 unique variants, dramatically enhancing our chances of finding a viable inhibitor.  We can make these peptides more stable to degradation through the incorporation of modified, “unnatural” amino acids.  We are focusing our efforts on development of inhibitors of DNA repair protein complexes that can be used to sensitize cancer cells towards chemotherapy and radiation.

Drug delivery with light

New methods for selective delivery of drugs to the sites of tumors promise to reduce the awful side effects of cancer chemotherapy.  We have developed a new strategy to deliver therapeutic agents into cancer cells with light.  To achieve this we attach a cancer chemotherapy drug to a cell impermeable small molecule via a light cleavable linker.  The resulting conjugates are completely inactive in the dark, but upon illumination become active and cytotoxic to cancer cells.

Fluorescent sensors

New means for detection of small quantities of important biological analytes with fluorescence promise to make diagnosis of diseases simple.   Using an azido pyrene derivative, we have achieved selective fluorogenic detection of hydrogen sulfide, a gaseous signaling compound.  Relative to other sensors, our molecule is highly water soluble, making it ideal for detection of hydrogen sulfide in biological fluids.

 Selected Publications

M.M. Dcona, D. Mitra, R.W. Goehe, D.A. Gewirtz, D.A. Lebman, M.C.T. Hartman.  “Photocaged Permeability: A new strategy for controlled drug release.”  Chem. Commun. 2012, 16, 4755-4757.

M.C.T. Hartman* and M.M. Dcona.  “A new, highly water-soluble, fluorescent turn-on chemodosimeter for direct measurement of hydrogen sulfide in biological fluids.” Analyst  2012137, 4910-4912.

S.M. Dever, E.R. White, M.C.T. Hartman, K. Valerie. BRCA1-directed, enhanced and aberrant homologous recombination: mechanism and potential treatment strategies. Cell Cycle201211, 687-694. PMC3318103.

E.R. White, T. Reed, Z. Ma,  M.C.T. Hartman. “Replacing amino acids in translation: expanding chemical diversity with non-natural variants.” Methods201360, 70-74.

E.R. White, L. Sun, Z. Ma, J.M. Beckta, B.A. Danzig, D.E. Hacker, M. Huie, D.C. Williams, R.A. Edwards, K. Valerie, J.N.M. Glover, M.C.T. Hartman.  A peptide library approach to uncover phosphomimetic inhibitors of the BRCA1 C-terminal domain. ACS Chem. Biol. 2015, ASAP Article.

M.M. Dcona, Q. Yu, J.A. Capobianco, M.C.T. Hartman. Near infrared light mediated release of doxorubicin using upconversion nanoparticles.  Chem. Commun. 2015, ASAP Article.