Ann Money

What tumors eat – and how to poison them

Oklahoma native Dr. Christal Sohl runs a cutting-edge research lab at San Diego State University that strives to combat disease by asking mechanistic questions at the intersection of biochemistry, molecular biophysics, cell biology, metabolomics, and oncology. Her talk will focus on her research on cancer metabolism, which is funded by the American Cancer Society and the National Institutes of Health. A gifted educator, Dr. Sohl will explain complex scientific concepts using easily understood imagery and metaphors, while sharing the personal stories that inspire her and other scientists to fight cancer with urgency and determination.

Dr. Christal Sohl first fell in love with scientific research as an undergraduate at the University of Oklahoma, where she helped synthesize chemical models of pollution-damaged heme. She then obtained her PhD in Biochemistry at Vanderbilt University where she studied the molecular mechanisms of a class of drug metabolizing enzymes called P450s. A postdoctoral fellowship brought Dr. Sohl to the Department of Pharmacology at Yale University where she explored treatment strategies against HIV and cancer. In 2015, she joined the faculty in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at San Diego State University, where she is currently an Assistant Professor. Prof. Sohl leads a bright and diverse team of “Sohlmates” who are exploring how metabolic enzymes become altered to drive tumor development and growth. By understanding how enzymes go “rogue” in cancer, we can establish the mechanisms behind tumor formation and identify new drug targets to combat this complex disease. Sohl Lab