Ph.D., McGill University, Montreal, Canada, 1970
Joined the Department of Life Sciences in 1970 as a Lecturer in Biochemistry
Full Professor in Biochemistry since 1983
Professor Emeritus, October 2001-present
170 publications, 6 Reviews, 2 Books, and 3 Patents.
Supervised 30 students -12 PhD and 18 MSc
REGULATION OF METABOLISM
Regulation of carbohydrate metabolism; mechanism action of hormones which affect metabolism; biochemistry of muscles, skin, and brain; muscular dystrophy; diabetes; skin traumas (e.g., burns, frostbite) and diseases. Regulation of energy metabolism in cancer cells. The goals are: (a) to explore the basic mechanisms in the regulation of metabolism; (b) the changes occurring in diabetes, muscular dystrophy, skin trauma, and cancer; (c) to find an effective treatment for these pathological conditions and diseases.
Experiments in our laboratory have revealed that glucose 1,6-bisphosphate (Glc-1,6-P2) is a powerful regulator of carbohydrate metabolism. The intracellular levels of Glc-1,6-P2 are controlled by different hormonal, physiological, and pathological conditions. This compound is not an intermediate in a metabolic pathway, but a regulatory molecule which acts as an intracellular signal and controls the different pathways of carbohydrate metabolism, through its allosteric effect on the key enzymes in these pathways.
In addition to allosteric regulation we studied the control of glycolytic enzymes through binding to cytoskeleton under different conditions, and the role of Ca2+ and calmodulin. New regulatory mechanisms in signal transduction of insulin and growth factors were found. The dual effects of Ca2+ on energy-producing systems in health and diseases were studied, as well as the use of calmodulin antagonists in treatment of various pathological conditions. Basic research on skin metabolism led us to the discovery of pharmacological agents for effective treatment of injuries (a patent was obtained).
Effects of insulin on glucose metabolism in brain cells in culture. Regulation of carbohydrate metabolism in melanoma cells. Role of hormones in skin disorders. Diabetes and its complications. Muscle diseases; the role of calcium and calmodulin. Studies of the control of energy metabolism in different types of cancer. Treatment of cancer with clotrimazole.
Regulation of Carbohydrate Metabolism, Vols. I & II, Edited by R. Beitner, CRC Press, Inc., Boca Raton, Florida, (U.S.A.) 1985.
Beitner, R. 1993. Control of glycolytic enzymes through binding to cell structures and by glucose 1,6-bisphosphate under different conditions. The role of Ca2+ and calmodulin. Review article. Int. J. Biochem. 25: 297-305.
Glass-Marmor, L. and Beitner, R. Detachment of glycolytic enzymes from cytoskeleton of melanoma cells induced by calmodulin antagonists. Europ. J. Pharmacol. 328: 241-248, 1997.
Penso, J. and Beitner, R. Clotrimazole and bifonazole detach hexokinase from mitochondria of melanoma cells. Europ. J. Pharmacol. 342: 113-117, 1998.
Assouline-Cohen, M., Ben-Porat, H. and Beitner, R. Activation of membrane skeleton-bound phosphofructokinase in erythrocytes induced by serotonin. Molec. Genet. Metab. 63: 235-238, 1998.
Beitner, R. Calmodulin antagonists and cell energy metabolism in health and disease. Review article, Molec. Genet. Metab. 64: 161-168, 1998.
Ashkenazy-Shahar, M., Ben-Porat, H. and Beitner, R. Insulin stimulates binding of phosphofructokinase to cytoskeleton and increases glucose 1,6-bisphosphate levels in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts, which is prevented by calmodulin antagonists. Molec. Genet. Metab. 65: 213-219, 1998.
Assouline-Cohen, M. and Beitner, R. Effects of Ca2+ on erythrocyte membrane skeleton-bound phosphofructokinase, ATP levels and hemolysis. Mol. Genet. Metab. 66: 56-61, 1999.
Glass-Marmor, L. and Beitner, R. Taxol (paclitaxel) induces a detachment of phosphofructokinase from cytoskeleton of melanoma cells and decreases the levels of glucose 1,6-bisphosphate, fructose 1.6-bisphosphate and ATP. Eur. J. Pharmacol. 370: 195-199, 1999.
Glass-Marmor, L., Penso, J. and Beitner, R. Ca2+-induced changes in energy metabolism and viability of melanoma cells. Br. J. Cancer 81: 219-224, 1999.