Dr Soo-Hyun Kim’s laboratory is particularly interested in understanding the cellular signalling events that regulate normal human development, especially those that govern neuronal cell migration.
A cell constantly communicates with its surroundings in order to maintain its survival, growth and differentiation – this is mediated by a complex network of signalling pathways which respond to different stimuli.
Cell migration and invasion are crucially important during embryogenesis, the process by which the embryo is formed and develops, therefore must be tightly regulated by multiple signalling pathways.
These developmental signalling pathways can be exploited by tumour cells, and the same cellular machineries are employed in dissemination and infiltration of cancer cells in advanced tumours. Dr Kim’s approach is to find anti-cancer therapeutic targets through identification of key molecular mechanisms that are commonly involved in the development and tumourigenesis, the creation of cancer.
Dr Kim has been particularly interested in a human congenital genetic disorder called Kallmann Syndrome (KS), which is caused by defective migration of neurons that are responsible for production of sex hormones and the sense of smell.
Investigation of the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying KS has led to the identification of several new factors important in this developmental process. Her research group aims to reveal the novel functions of these factors and how they can be used to improve diagnosis and management of the disease later in life, as well as to provide potential therapeutic target for tumours.
Dr Kim joined St George’s, University of London in January 2009 as a group leader and senior lecturer in Biomedical Sciences. Prior to this, Dr Kim was a senior research fellow at Centre for Neuroendocrinology, University College London (UCL) Medical School, Royal Free Campus, where her research was focused on the underlying molecular mechanisms of human developmental disorders caused by defective neurones and reproductive dysfunctions. Her particular interest was on the molecular pathogenesis of Kallmann syndrome, a genetic disorder with delayed puberty and loss of sense of smell. Anosmin-1 and fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) are among the key factors underlying this disease and Dr Kim has published important findings regarding their interactions and signal pathways involved. She was awarded with £1 million Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council project grant in 2008.
During her postdoctoral research (1997 - 2003) at Cancer Research UK London Research Institute, Lincoln’s Inn Fields (previously Imperial Cancer Research Fund), she worked with Dr Hartmut Land and then with Dr Gordon Peters to investigate oncogenic signal pathways and cell cycle regulation, in particular the mechanism by which the tumour suppressor ARF and p53 operate and how the cell cycle inhibitor p16 contributes to cellular ageing and cancer.
Dr Kim received her PhD from Rutgers University, New Jersey Medical School, USA under the supervision of Professor Harvey Ozer who discovered the DNA tumour virus SV40 T antigen that can transform normal cells into immortal cancer cells. Dr Kim is currently a member of Anatomical Society, Endocrine Society and British Society of Cell Biology. She is also the Biological Sciences program leader for Korean Scientists and Engineers Association in UK and EU-Korean Conference on Science and Technology. She has been invited to write expert reviews, peer reviewer for journals, Expert Session chair for international research conferences.
C. Choy, H. Kim, J. Lee, D. Williams, D. Palethorpe, G. Fellows, A. Wright, K. Laing, L. Bridges, F. Howe & S. Kim. (2013) Anosmin-1 contributes to brain tumor malignancy through integrin signal pathways. Endocrine Related Cancer 21:85-99 doi: 10.1530/ERC-13-0181
S. Kim, J. Turnbull & S. Guimond (2011) Extracellular matrix and cell signalling: the dynamic cooperation of integrin, proteoglycan and growth factor receptor. Journal of Endocrinology 209: 139–151.
N. Xu, H. Kim, B. Bhagavath, S. Cho, J. Lee, K. Ha, I. Meliciani, W. Wenzel, R. Podolsky, L. Chorich, K. Stackhouse, A. Grove, L. Odom, M. Ozata, D. Bick, R. Sherins, S. Kim, R. Cameron & L. Layman (2011) Nasal embryonic LHRH factor (NELF) mutations in patients with normosmic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and Kallmann syndrome. Fertility & Sterility. 95:1613-1620
H.G. Kim, J.W. Ahn, I. Kurth, R. Ullmann, H.T. Kim, A. Kulharya, K. Ha, Y. Itokawa, I. Meliciani, W. Wenzel, D. Lee, G. Rosenberger, M. Ozata, D. P. Bick, R. J. Sherins, T. Nagase, S. H. Kim, C. H. Kim, H.-H. Ropers, J. Gusella, V. Kalscheuer, C. Y. Choi & L. C. Layman. (2010) WDR11, a WD protein that interacts with transcription factor EMX1, is mutated in idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and Kallmann syndrome. American Journal of Human Genetics 87:465-479
Y. Hu, S. Guimond, P. Travers, S. Cadman, E. Hohenester, J. Turnbull, S. Kim* & P. Bouloux* (*equal corresponding last author) (2009) Novel mechanisms of fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 regulation by extracellular matrix protein anosmin-1. Journal of Biological Chemistry 284:29905-29920.
S. Moulin, S. Llanos, S. Kim & G. Peters (2008) Binding to nucleophosmin determines the localization of human and chicken ARF but not its impact on p53. Oncogene 27: 2382–2389
S. Kim, J. Rowe, H. Fujii, R. Jones, B. Schmierer, B. Kong, K. Kuchler, D. Foster, D. Ish-Horowicz & G. Peters (2006) Up-regulation of chicken p15INK4b at senescence and in the developing brain. Journal of Cell Science 119:2435-2443.
D. Gonzalez, S. Kim, Y. Hu, S. Guimond, J. Schofield, G. Vannelli, J. Turnbull & P. Bouloux (2004) Anosmin-1 modulates FGFR1 signaling in human GnRH olfactoray neuroblasts through a heparan sulphate-dependent mechanism. Journal of Neuroscience 24:10384-10392.
S. Kim, M. Mitchell, H. Fujii, S. Llanos & G. Peters (2003) Absence of p16INK4a and truncation of ARF tumor suppressors in chickens. Proc Natl Acad Sci U.S.A. 100:211-216.
Yeon-Joo Kim (Postdoctoral Fellow) – Characterisation of mouse models of hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism and Kallmann syndrome.
Ji-Young Lee (PhD student) - The role of WDR11 in normosmic hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism and Kallmann syndrome.
Catherine Choy (PhD student) – Common signalling pathways in development and cancer; the role of Kallmann syndrome-associated genes in brain tumour.
Dr Franklyn Howe (Cardiovascular Sciences, St George's, University of London).
Dr Leslie Bridges (Cellular Pathology, St George’s Healthcare Trust NHS)
Professor Dorothy Bennett (Biomedical Sciences, St George’s, University of London)
Dr Tristan McKay (Biomedical Sciences, St George’s, University of London)
Professor Guy Whitely (Biomedical Sciences, St George’s, University of London)
Professor Lawrence Layman (Georgia Regents University, U.S.A.)
Dr Hyung Goo Kim (Georgia Regents University, U.S.A)
Dr Haseong Kim (Korea Research Institute of Bioscience & Biotechnology)
Jul, 2014 - Jun, 2017 : Medical Research Council (MRC) Project Grant. "Dual functions of WDR11 in the pathogenesis of hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism." £592,920
Oct, 2012 – Mar, 2013: Wellcome Trust Institutional Strategic Support Fund, St George's, University of London Researcher Development Support Scheme. "The molecular mechanisms underlying Kallmann syndrome and normosmic hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism." £16,930
Jul, 2011- Jun, 2014: Enterprise Award, St George's, University of London, “Validation of diagnostic markers for brain tumours.” £14,000
Jul, 2010 – Jun, 2013: AIL-MAURI Academic Fund PhD Studentship Grant “Anosmin-1-mediated signalling events in neuronal differentiation and migration of human gonadotropin-releasing hormone neuroblasts.” £77,500
Jan, 2010 – Jun, 2010: Wellcome Trust Value In People Award - SGUL Human Resources Bridging Funding Scheme “Anosmin-1-mediated crosstalk between FGFR1 and TGF-beta signalling pathways.” £16,847
Jan, 2008 – Dec, 2010: Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council Project Grant BB/F007167/1 “Extracellular modulation of multi-protein signalling complexes: molecular regulation of FGFR signalling by anosmin-1 & heparan sulphate proteoglycans” £945,937
Dr Soo-Hyun Kim is a lecturer and tutor for Biomedical Science and the module organiser for year 2. Dr Kim is also a tutor for Medicine MBBS year 1 and 2. Dr Kim supervises BSc research projects.
Dr Kim is the pathway lead for Reproductive and Developmental Biology as part of the MRes in Biomedical Sciences. She supervises MRes research projects. Currently she is the lead supervisor for one PhD student and the second supervisor for two PhD students.
Dr Kim interviews for undergraduate and postgraduate admissions (Biomedical Sciences clearing interviews, Medicine MBBS4/5, MRes in Biomedical Sciences).
Cell signalling, neuroendocrinology, developmental disorder, genetics, fertility and reproduction, oncogene, brain tumour, mouse models.