Brian Eckenroth, Ph.D.

Faculty Scientist

Training & Education

Dr. Eckenroth received his Ph.D. in biochemistry with Dr. Robert Hondal at the University of Vermont investigating the molecular mechanism of the mammalian selenoprotein thioredoxin reductase. He did his postdoctoral work with Dr. Stephen Everse and Dr. Anne Mason where he solved the crystal structure of human transferrin in complex with its cellular receptor TFR1. He joined the Doublié research group in 2009 as research staff, receiving further training in crystal structure determination from Dr. Sylvie Doublié and Dr. Mark Rould. Additionally, he trained on the mechanical details of x-ray diffraction equipment maintenance with Dr. Rould.

Research Interests

The focus of my research in the Doublié group is the structural investigation of proteins that play a critical role in maintaining genomic stability. The broad theme is understanding the molecular mechanisms of the enzymes that encounter the thousands of sites of DNA damage that occur within each cell on a daily basis. Aberrant function of these enzymes or mutations in them can contribute to mechanisms of cancer development. I am honored to be recipient of a National Cancer Institute R50 award (R50 CA233185) to support structural studies of DNA polymerase theta which functions in error prone DNA replication or repair in response to DNA breaks, and cancer-based variants of the DNA glycosylases NEIL1-3 as well as DNA polymerase beta that function in the base excision repair pathway. 
My broader interest in structural biology is not only for the answers that the structures can provide, but that their investigation generates a platform for researchers to ask better and more specific questions. My combination of academic and industrial experiences, in concert with biochemical, structural and facility management training allow to me serve as the day-to-day resource for students and postdoctoral fellows engaged in structural biology investigating diverse molecular targets.

Eckenroth DNA research Related Image

Featured Publications

Mahmoud MM, Liptak C, Moreno MV, Eckenroth BE, Alnajjar KS, East K, Huang J, Towle-Weicksel JB, Doublié S, Loria JP & Sweasy JB (2018) The I260Q mutator variant of human polymerase β favors a closed conformation in the absence of incoming nucleotide. Nucleic Acids Res. 46, 10740-56. PMCID:PMC6237750

Eckenroth BE, Towle-Weicksel JB, Nemec AA, Murphy DL, Sweasy JB & Doublié S. (2017) Remote Mutations Induce Functional Changes in Active Site Residues of Human DNA Polymerase β. Biochemistry 56, 2363-2371. PMCID:PMC5501977

Eckenroth BE, Fleming AM, Sweasy JB, Burrows CJ & Doublié S. (2014) Crystal Structure of DNA Polymerase β with DNA Containing the Base Lesion Spiroiminodihydantoin in a Templating Position. Biochemistry (Rapid Report) 53, 2075-77. PMCID:PMC3985455

Eckenroth BE, Steere AN, Chasteen ND, Everse SJ & Mason AB. (2011) How the binding of human transferrin primes the transferrin receptor potentiating iron release at endosomal pH. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 108, 13089-94. PMCID:PMC3156180

Hyde SJ, Eckenroth BE, Smith BA, Eberley WA, Heintz NH, Jackman JE, & Doublié S. (2010) From the Cover: tRNAHis guanylyltransferase (THG1), a unique 3’-5’ nucleotidyl transferase, shares unexpected structural homology with canonical 5’-3’ DNA polymerases. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 107, 20305-20310. PMCID:2996709

More publications

Brian Eckenroth smiling

Contact Information

Office: Given E314