Richard Anderson Lab
  • Cell Migration, Invasion and Metastasis
  • Phosphoinositide Signaling in the Nucleus
  • Receptor Control of Autophagy
  • Spatial and Receptor Signaling at the Endosome
  • Structure and Function of Signaling Molecules
  • Translational Applications to Human Diseases
Research: Cell Migration, Invasion and Metastasis1 Research: Phosphoinositide Signaling in the Nucleus2 Research: Receptor Control of Autophagy3 Research: Spatial and Receptor Signaling in the Endosome4 Research: Structure and Function of Signaling Molecules5 Research: Translational Applications to Human Diseases6

Phosphoinositide Spatial and Regulatory Mechanisms that Control Cellular Functions

Our laboratory is focused on understanding the signaling transduction and regulatory pathways that impact cancer progression and metastasis, neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.


A focus is on spatial organization of cellular signaling. Very recently spatial organization of cellular signals and messengers such as lipid messenger signals has been shown to be fundamental in regulating most, perhaps all, cellular events. The group currently focuses on cell polarization in control of migration and invasion in cancer cell metastasis, the role of membrane trafficking in regulation of growth receptor signaling and control of autophagy, and the control of gene expression by nuclear located lipid messengers. For these studies we use many interdisciplinary approaches, including cell biology, biochemistry, structural biology, biophysics, genetics, molecular biology and high-resolution fluorescence and electron microscopy.


Our research foundation is basic research, yet we also seek to define how the basic signaling and regulatory pathways that we have discovered are fundamental to a wide variety of human epithelial cancers, including breast, head and neck cancers and lung cancers.


The work focused on cell migration and autophagy has clear implications for cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases. The role of nuclear lipid messengers in gene expression represents a fundamental discovery with implications to all aspects of human biology and disease.


An emphasis of our group is the training of young scholars in scientific research.

Anderson Lab News

November 19, 2014

Xiaojun’s paper is now accepted at Cell. Congratulations to all the authors.

Xiaojun Tan, Narendra Thapa, Yue Sun and Richard A Anderson (2014) A Kinase Independent Role for the EGF Receptor in Autophagy Initiation. In press, Cell.

July 27, 2014

Group attended the FASEB meeting on, “FASEB 2014- Lipids and Lipid Regulated Kinases in Cancer, July 27-August 1, 2014 in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Richard is speaking, “Lipid messengers in the nucleus control PTEN expression.”

Narendra Thapa is a speaker also “Phosphatidylinositol Phosphate 5-Kinase gamma (PIPKIγ) Regulates Migration and Anchorage-independent Growth of Tumor Cells.

June 1, 2014

Group attended the FASEB meeting on, “Phospholipid Cell Signaling and Metabolism in Inflammation and Cancer” June 1-6, 2014 Niagara Falls, NY, USA. Richard is speaking, “Phosphoinositide regulation of receptor trafficking.”

May 25, 2014

Nick Schills paper is in press at J. Cell Science and Emphasized in the JCS Snapshot. Congratulations to all the authors.

Schill, N.J., Hedman, A.C., Choi, S. and Anderson, R.A. (2014) Isoform 5 of PIPKIγ Regulates the Endosomal Trafficking and Degradation of E-cadherin. J. Cell Science. 127, 2189–2203 PMID: 24610942 PMCID: PMC4021470 Emphasized in the JCS Snapshot.

May 5, 2013

Suyong Choi paper is accepted at The EMBO Journal. Have a good read.

Choi, S., Thapa, N., Sacks, D., and Anderson, R.A. (2013) Directional Cell Migration is Regulated by an IQGAP1 and Type Iγ Phosphatidylinositol Phosphate Kinase Signaling Nexus. The EMBO Journal 32, 2617-30, PMID: 23982733, PMCID: PMC3791370


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