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Our Research

Research in the Blum lab is diverse and multidisciplinary, where we use a combination of organic chemistry and biochemical methodologies. One area of our research focuses on proteases which are enzymes that cleave proteins. Proteases are widely expressed and contribute to almost every cellular process, and are found to play key roles in several diseases.Another main endeavor of the lab is to design and generate novel chemical tools, probes, that report on the activity of specific cysteine proteases. These probes are generated by combining solid and liquid-phase organic chemistry and are suitable for studying proteases in vitro, in tissue cultures, in live animals and even in human samples, thus enabling application for non-invasive imaging and molecular imaging of diseases. Our research focuses largely on the application of these novel probes to investigate the involvement of specific target proteases in a variety of pathologies, including those in normal conditions. An additional and also significant area of focus in our lab is the development and application of theranostic probes that possess both therapeutic and diagnostic capabilities.