David Ferguson, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Pathology

Research Interests

The Ferguson laboratory studies how mammalian cells maintain a stable genome. The proteins that accomplish this serve to prevent cancer and ensure proper functioning of the immune system. Currently, our main focus is a multi-protein complex called MRN, which is mutated in human cancer predisposition and immunodeficiency syndromes.


Hartlerode AJ, Morgan MJ, Wu Y, Buis J and Ferguson DO. Recruitment and activation of the ATM kinase in the absence of DNA damage sensors. Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, 2015 In Press.

Buis J, Stoneham T, Spehalski E, Ferguson DO. Mre11 regulates CtIP-dependent double strand break repair by interaction with CDK2. Nature Structural and Molecular Biology 2012 January.  Jan 8;19(2):246-52.  PMC3272152

Spehalski E, Kovalchuk AL, Collins JT, Liang G, Dubois W, Morse HC 3rd, Ferguson DO, Casellas R, Dunnick WA. Oncogenic Myc translocations are independent of chromosomal location and orientation of the immunoglobulin heavy chain locus. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Aug 21;109(34):13728-32. PMC3427096.

Xiao H, Yu Z, Wu Y, Nan J, Merry DE, Sekiguchi JM, Ferguson DO, Lieberman AP, Dressler GR. A polyglutamine expansion disease protein sequesters PTIP to attenuate DNA repair and increase genomic instability. Human Molecular Genetics. 2012 Oct1;21(19):4225-36. PMC3441122.

Regal JA, Festerling TA, Buis JM, Ferguson DO.  Disease-associated MRE11 mutants impact ATM/ATR DNA damage signaling by distinct mechanisms.  Human Molecular Genetics. 2013. 2013 Dec 20;22(25) 5146-59. PMC3842175

Jones M, Osawa G, Regal JA, Weinberg DN, Taggart J, Kocak H, Friedman A, Ferguson DO, Keegan CE, Maillard I., Hematopoietic stem cells are acutely sensitive to Acd shelterin gene inactivation.  Journal of Clinical Investigation. 2014  Jan 2;124(1):353-66  PMID: 24316971, [PubMed - in process]