Kinases are a class of enzyme that transfer phosphate groups from molecules containing energy, for example adenosine trisphosphate, to another protein. This usually results in a change in function of the phosphorylated protein. There are a large number of protein kinases (518 kinases make up the human kinome) and they are split into several families. Kinases are involved in important cell signalling processes. The kinome is relatively unexplored, but there are several drugs in clinical use which target kinases. Kinases are therefore promising therapeutic targets.
Our drug screening assays allow us to probe libraries of novel compounds designed to target kinases for their effect in inflammatory processes. The genetic tools available for the zebrafish model will ultimately allow us to confirm any therapeutic target that this approach yields. Inhibitors of SGK1 (link to SGK1 section) have been demonstrated to enhance inflammation resolution (Burgon et al., 2014) and we are now interested in understanding whether inhibitors of other kinases can also drive inflammation resolution.