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Personal profile

Research interests

Dr. Thomas Spratt's research has focused on the elucidation of mechanisms of DNA damage, repair and mutagenesis. The Spratt lab uses a multidisciplinary approach including organic synthesis, steady-state and transient state kinetics, protein engineering, cell biology, mass spectrometry and next-generation sequencing.

The Spratt lab has made contributions in elucidating mechanisms of tobacco carcinogenesis. They have identified repair pathways and mutagenesis mechanisms of specific DNA adducts produced from tobacco smoke.

The Spratt Lab uses a chemical biology approach, in which modified nucleotides are designed and synthesized to elucidate specific aspects of the active site chemistry of DNA repair proteins and polymerases. In early work, the mechanism of action of O6-alkylguanine –DNA alkyltransferase, a critical DNA repair protein, was examined. More recently, critical protein-DNA and DNA-DNA interactions during the replication of undamaged and carcinogen-damage DNA have been identified.

Current research involves designing polymerase-specific substrates to probe the multi-faceted roles of translesion DNA polymerases in vivo.

Education/Academic qualification

Chemistry, PhD, University of Chicago


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  • Chemistry of mutagenesis

    Spratt, T.

    National Cancer Institute


    Project: Research project

  • Research Output

    • 1668 Citations
    • 25 h-Index
    • 61 Article
    • 2 Comment/debate
    • 1 Letter
    • 1 Review article

    Active Site Interactions Impact Phosphoryl Transfer during Replication of Damaged and Undamaged DNA by Escherichia coli DNA Polymerase i

    Prakasha Gowda, A. S. & Spratt, T. E., Nov 20 2017, In : Chemical research in toxicology. 30, 11, p. 2033-2043 11 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • Honokiol Inhibits DNA Polymerases β and λ and Increases Bleomycin Sensitivity of Human Cancer Cells

    Gowda, A. S. P., Suo, Z. & Spratt, T. E., Feb 20 2017, In : Chemical research in toxicology. 30, 2, p. 715-725 11 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 5 Scopus citations
  • 1 Scopus citations

    N2-Substituted 2′-Deoxyguanosine Triphosphate Derivatives as Selective Substrates for Human DNA Polymerase κ

    Gowda, A. S. P., Lee, M. & Spratt, T. E., Jan 1 2017, In : Angewandte Chemie - International Edition. 56, 10, p. 2628-2631 4 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 4 Scopus citations

    DNA Polymerases η and ζ Combine to Bypass O2-[4-(3-Pyridyl)-4-oxobutyl]thymine, a DNA Adduct Formed from Tobacco Carcinogens

    Prakasha Gowda, A. S. & Spratt, T. E., Mar 21 2016, In : Chemical research in toxicology. 29, 3, p. 303-316 14 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 9 Scopus citations