CNRCS Professor Featured in Journal of Biological Chemistry

CNRCS senior research professor Dr. Brad Thompson recently authored an invited review  for the Journal of Biological Chemistry, in which he advocated a new model for explaining the behavior of steroid hormone receptors and nuclear receptors in the synthesis of RNA. The review, “Structural dynamics, intrinsic disorder and allostery in nuclear receptors as transcription factors,” was published in late November, in collaboration with Johns Hopkins University professor Vincent Hilser.

"In this latest review, we proposed a conceptual model for quantitative evaluation of the actions of these receptors," said Thompson. "The more we learn about the role of these receptors in transcription, the better we can understand the expression of specific genes in human DNA."

The review highlighted existing data to illustrate the structure and interactions of the primary steroid hormone receptor domains: ligand binding, DNA binding and N-terminal. These domains interact allosterically with one another, and this interaction depends strongly on the "intrinsically disordered" nature of the N-terminal domain. As implied, these processes are of significant interest in the study of nuclear receptors and cell signaling.

Thompson is no stranger to the research journal community, having founded The Endocrine Society publication Molecular Endocrinology. His research experience dates back the 1960s and includes the first cloning of a steroid receptor. Thompson currently holds faculty positions in CNRCS and the UH Center for Biomedical and Environmental Genomics, and is Professor Emeritus at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston.

The Journal of Biological Chemistry is affiliated with the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. The publication is recognized as the most-cited journal in biomedical research and is published weekly.

For more details on the review or to view the abstract, visit