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Seminars

Institute of Cell Biology Seminar Series

 

January seminars will be held at 12.00 noon in the Michael Swann Lecture Theatre.

All other seminars will be held at 12.00 noon in Lecture Theatre 1, Daniel Rutherford Building.

Everyone is welcome to attend.

Semester Two: January - June 2015

 

Date

Speaker

Host

Venue

12th Jan 2015

Ana Pombo

Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology

Adrian Bird

Michael Swann

Main Lecture Theatre

19th Jan 2015

Luis Aragon

MRC Clinical Sciences Centre  ICL

Bill Earnshaw

Michael Swann

Main Lecture Theatre

26th Jan 2015

Anthony Bishopp

Plant Sciences, School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham

Justin Goodrich

Michael Swann

Main Lecture Theatre

2nd Feb

2015

Esben Lorentzen

Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry

JP Arulanandam

Michael Swann

Main Lecture Theatre

9th Feb 2015

Chris Smith

Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge

Jean Beggs

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

16th Feb 2015

Titia Sixma

Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam

Atlanta Cook

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

23rd Feb 2015

Paul Fraser

Plant Molecular Science, Centre for Systems & Synthetic Biology,

Royal Holloway College, University of London

Gary Loake

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

2nd March 2015

Jordan Raff

Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford

Kevin Hardwick

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

9th March 2015

Sheena Radford

The Astbury Centre for Structural Molecular Biology, University of Leeds

Paul Barlow

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

16th March 2015

James Murray

Department of Life Sciences, Imperial College London

Atlanta Cook

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

23rd March 2015

David Baulcombe

Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge

David Finnegan

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

30th March 2015

Saul Purton

Institute of Structural and Molecular Biology, University College London

Alistair McCormick

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

6th April

2015

Easter Monday

 

 

13th April 2015

Genevieve Almouzni

Chromatin Dynamics Laboratory,  Nuclear Dynamics and Genome Plasticity Unit, UMR 218 CNRS / Institut Curie

Robin Allshire

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

Tues 21st  April 2015

(one off)

Iva Tolic-Norrelykke

Max Planck Institute Of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics

Teuta Pilitzota

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

27th April 2015

Paul Knox

Plant Cell Wall Biology Lab, Centre for Plant Sciences, Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of Leeds

Naomi Nakayama

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

Wed 6th May

2015

Jon Pines

Gurdon Institute, Cambridge

Hiro Ohkura

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

Wed 13th May 2015

Cristina Cardoso

Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany

Irina Stancheva

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

Wed 20th May 2015

Shona Murphy

Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford

Jean Beggs

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

Wed 27th May 2015

Tony Carr

University of Sussex

Kevin Hardwick

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

8th June 2015

Ana Losada

Molecular Oncology Group, cnio (Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncológicas), Madrid

Irina Stancheva

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

15th June 2015

David Rand

Warwick Systems Biology Centre, University of Warwick

Andrew Millar

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

22nd June 2015

Sébastien Pfeffer

Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire IBMC CNRS

Universite of Strasbourg

Gracjan Michlewski

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

29th June 2015

Robbie Waugh

Cell and Molecular Sciences, The James Hutton Institute, Dundee

Naomi Nakayama

Daniel Rutherford

Lecture Theatre G27

 

 

 

 

 

Other seminars

Date Event
24th Mar 2015
13:00
Darwin Building
Lecture Theatres G10

Bas van Steensel, Netherlands Cancer Institute

Architecture and single-cell dynamics of genome - nuclear lamina interactions

Host: Adrian Bird


20th Feb 2015
12:00
Darwin Lecture Theatre
G10

Martin Wuehr

Proteomic Clues to Cell Organisation

The composition of the nucleoplasm determines the behaviour of key processes such as transcription, yet there is still no reliable and quantitative resource of nuclear proteins. Furthermore, it is still unclear how the distinct nuclear and cytoplasmic compositions are maintained.  To describe the nuclear proteome quantitatively, we hand-isolated the large nuclei of frog oocytes and measured the nucleocytoplasmic partitioning of ~9000 proteins by mass spectrometry. Most proteins localise entirely to either nucleus or cytoplasm, only ~17% partition equally. Native size but not polypeptide-molecular-weight is predictive of localisation: partitioned proteins exhibit native size larger than 100 kDa.  To evaluate the role of nuclear export in maintaining localisation, we inhibited Exportin 1.  This resulted in the expected relocation of proteins towards the nucleus, but only 3% of the proteome was affected. Thus, complex assembly and passive retention, not continuous active transport, is the dominant mechanism for the maintenance of the nuclear proteome.

Host: Julie Welburn


16th Feb 2015
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
Lecture Theatre 1 G27

Titia Sixma - Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam

WT PhD Programme Seminar - "tbc"

Host: Atlanta Cook


9th Feb 2015
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
Lecture Theatre 1 G27

Chris Smith - Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge

WT PhD Programme Seminar - "Understanding the roles of alternative pre-mRNA splicing in shaping smooth muscle cell transcriptomes"

Alternative pre-mRNA splicing is a key molecular mechanism that allows diversification of expressed proteomes far beyond the limitations suggested by a simple "gene-count" of a genome. Many examples of functionally important alternative splicing events have been described, while diseases arising from disruption of alternative splicing show that not only is RNA splicing an essential step in gene expression, but that appropriate regulation of alternative splicing programmes is essential for healthy development. Analyses of alternative splicing have employed both molecular dissection of individual alternative splicing events, as well as global profiling and computational analyses of co-regulated programmes of alternative splicing. I will describe the use of both types of approach by my lab in the analysis of alternative splicing in smooth muscle cells.

Host: Jean Beggs


19th Jan 2015
12:00
Michael Swann
Main Lecture Theatre

Luis Aragon - MRC Clinical Sciences Centre ICL

WT PhD Programme Seminar - "SMC complexes and their chromosomal roles"

Maintenance of genome integrity over cell generations requires the accurate orchestration of key chromosome events during the cell cycle, including genome replication, detection and repair of any DNA lesions and faithful segregation of the chromosome content. SMC protein complexes are important protein complexes for the higher-order manipulation of chromatin and are key contributors to genome stability. Research in our laboratory is focused on the evolutionary conserved SMC complexes cohesin, condensin and Smc5/6, which have crucial roles in chromosome segregation, chromosome-wide gene regulation and recombinational repair. Recently we have developed new proteomic approaches for the identification of SUMOylation on key proteins promoting DNA repair, with particular focus on substrates of the SUMO E3 ligase Nse2, one of the subunits of the Smc5/6 complex. One of the SUMO targets identified as a Smc5/6 substrate is the Bloom helicase Sgs1. Here I will present data showing that Sgs1 SUMOylation depends on Nse2 and is required for HJ dissolution and crossover suppression during double-strand break (DSB) repair.

Host: Bill Earnshaw


16th Jan 2015
12:00
Michael Swann Building
S7.20

David LLobet-Navas, The Mount Sinai Hospital-Icahn Medical Institute, New York, USA

Regulation and function of miR-424/503 in mammary gland development and tissue homeostasis

Despite the established role of a variety of extrinsic and intrinsic signals regulating mammary gland development, a restricted number of studies have identified and validated miRNAs with a role in any aspect of normal mammary gland biology, and even fewer have studied their function using transgenic animal models. Here, we have unveiled the microRNA cluster miR-424(322)/503 as an important TGFb effector that coordinates the massive reorganization that occurs in the mammary epithelium after pregnancy. Furthermore, through the generation of a knock-out mouse model and using in vitro experimental approaches, we have characterized mechanistically its role and regulation in a comprehensive way and linked their alteration to aberrant homeostasis in multiple tissues.

Host: Gracjan Michlewski


12th Jan 2015
12:00
Michael Swann
Main Lecture Theatre

Ana Pombo - Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology

WT PhD Programme Seminar - "Hierarchical organization of chromosome folding during mammalian cell differentiation"

Chromosomes have a complex spatial organization within the cell nucleus. They are folded into an array of megabase-sized regions, known as topologically associated domains (TADs), marked by locally enriched chromatin interactions. TADs have internal sub-structures, but their higher-order organization and folding into chromosome territories remains elusive.

 

We have investigated interactions between TADs and find that, far from being isolated structures, they form a functional hierarchy of domains-within-domains (metaTADs), which extends across genomic scales up to entire chromosomes. We map chromatin contacts with Hi-C along a differentiation time-course from proliferating murine embryonic stem cells, through neuronal precursors cells, and terminally differentiated neurons. We find that TAD-TAD interactions generate a hierarchical folding structure irrespective of cell type, reflecting a general organizational principle of the mammalian genome. We explore the mechanisms of hierarchical folding using polymer modelling, and demonstrate that it can promote efficient chromatin packaging without loss of contact specificity. We find that the structures of metaTAD trees correlate with genetic, epigenetic and expression features. The structural rearrangements in metaTAD trees observed during differentiation correlate with changes in transcriptional state, highlighting a functional role for hierarchical chromatin organization far beyond simple packing efficiency.

Host: Adrian Bird


8th Dec 2014
12:00
Darwin Building
Lecture Theatres G10

Pradeepa Marulasiddappa, MRC Human Genetics Unit, Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, University of Edinburgh

Role of chromatin and noncoding RNAs in regulating gene expression

Recent ENCODE and GWAS studies suggests association of distal regulatory elements and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) with various diseases. LncRNAs show highly tissue specific expression, however little is known about their specific transcriptional regulation and functional mechanisms.

While investigating the regulation of gene expression by the Psip1/MLL complex, I discovered that Psip1/p52, a transcriptional co-activator which binds to H3K36me3 on the expressed exons, also interacts with splicing factors to modulate alternative splicing. My research also showed that the same protein regulates the transcription of lncRNA Hottip, which in-turn maintains expression of Hoxa genes in cis by recruiting the WDR5/MLL complex. To directly assess lncRNA function in cis, synthetic transcriptional regulators (dCas9-VP160) were recruited to modulate endogenous lncRNA promoters and assessed the regulatory impact on target genes. Further, by editing the Hottip locus, I have recently demonstrated it’s role in regulating Hox gene expression.

Host: Robin Allshire


27th Nov 2014
12:30
Michael Swann Building
S7.20

Federico Pelisch, Centre for Gene Regulation and Expression, University of Dundee

Dynamic SUMO modification regulates chromosome dynamics in the Caenorhabditis elegans embryo

Post-translational modifications including phosphorylation, ubiquitylation and sumoylation are key cell cycle regulators. My main interest is to understand how sumoylation contributes to a timely and accurate cell division. The small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO), initially characterised as a suppressor of a mutation in the gene encoding the centromeric protein MIF2, is involved in many aspects of cell cycle regulation. However, the detailed dynamics of conjugation and deconjugation and the mechanisms of action of sumoylation during mitosis remain unexplored. We took advantage of C. elegans to establish the contribution of SUMO to a timely and accurate cell division, using the embryonic first mitotic division as a model. Chromatin-associated SUMO conjugates accumulate during metaphase but decrease rapidly during anaphase. Accumulation of SUMO conjugates on the metaphase plate and proper chromosome alignment depends on the SUMO E2 conjugating enzyme UBC-9 and SUMO E3 ligase PIASGEI-17. Deconjugation is achieved by the SUMO protease ULP-4 and is crucial for correct progression through the cell cycle. Moreover, ULP-4 is necessary for Aurora BAIR-2 localisation to the spindle midzone during anaphase.

By establishing a C. elegans 'SUMO toolkit' for genetics, cell biology, and biochemistry, we have shown that dynamic SUMO conjugation plays a role in cell cycle progression. Currently, I am focusing on the mechanisms by which SUMO regulates chromosome behaviour during mitosis and also meiosis.

Host: David Tollervey


8th Oct 2014
16:00
Michael Swann Building
Main Lecture Theatre

Rudolf Jaenisch, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

iPS technology, gene editing and disease research

Host: Adrian Bird


2nd Oct 2014
16:00
Darwin Lecture Theatre
G10

Ramesh Pillai, EMBL, Grenoble, France

Germline small RNAs for genome defence

Germline-specific Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) protect animal genomes against transposons and are essential for fertility. piRNAs targeting active transposons are amplified by the ping-pong cycle, which couples Piwi endonucleolytic slicing of target RNAsto biogenesis of new piRNAs. Here, we describe the identification of a transient Amplifier complex that mediates biogenesis of secondary piRNAs in insect cells. Amplifier is nucleated by the DEAD box RNA helicase Vasa and contains the two Piwi proteins participating in the ping-pong loop, the Tudor protein Qin/Kumo and antisense piRNA guides. These components assemble on the surface of Vasa’s helicase domain, which functions as an RNA clamp to anchor Amplifier onto transposon transcripts. We show that ATP-dependent RNP remodeling by Vasa facilitates transfer of 5' sliced piRNA precursors between pingpong partners, and loss of this activity causes sterility in Drosophila. Our results reveal the molecular basis for the small RNA amplification that confers adaptive immunity against transposons.

Host: David Tollervey


2nd Oct 2014
10:00
Michael Swann Building
S7.15

Nonia Pariente, Senior Editor, EMBO Reports

EMBO Press – a look behind the scenes of scientific publishing

The talk will give an insider view of the publication process at journals run by professional editors, from manuscript submission to final decision. Publication policies at EMBO, such as the transparent process and scooping protection, will be also discussed, as well as do’s and don’ts for authors and referees.

Host: David Tollervey


25th Jun 2014
16:45
Michael Swann Building
Main Lecture Theatre

Professor Caroline Dean - John Innes Centre, Norwich

Wellcome Trust PhD Programme in Cell Biology Symposium Lecture - Chromatin and antisense transcript dynamics underlying seasonal timing.

The study of adaptation in plants has led us into the dissection of conserved mechanisms that link antisense transcripts with chromatin dynamics. This work emerged from genetic and molecular analysis of flowering pathways that quantitatively modulate expression of the flowering repressor FLC in response to different environmental and developmental cues.

The antisense transcripts, collectively called COOLAIR, are alternatively spliced and polyadenylated, initiate in an R-loop covering the 3’ end of FLC and encompass the whole FLC sense transcription unit. The differentially processed forms of COOLAIR are associated with different FLC chromatin states via changes in recruitment of chromatin modifying complexes. The talk will describe our current understanding of these mechanisms.

Host: Wellcome Trust PhD Programme in Cell Biology


28th May 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Professor Sir Tom Blundell - Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge

WT PhD programme seminar - Genomes, Structural Biology and Drug Discovery: Combating Resistance in Cancer and Tuberculosis

Over the past fifty years our knowledge of the evolution of proteins in living cells has been mapped in terms of molecular architecture and amino acid sequence. We have begun to learn that many accepted mutations are selectively neutral but others appear to be selectively advantageous to the organism by optimising stability, activity and interactions at the molecular and cellular levels. More recently second generation methods of gene sequencing are allowing us to follow the evolution and emergence of resistance as tumours escape the restraints of tissue function and as pathogens such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis and HIV evade the immune response of the host.

 

To understand this is essential to the design of new medicines. I will discuss work in my laboratory funded by the Wellcome Trust on cancer and by the Gates Foundation on tuberculosis. The reality of evolution will take me to the Cambridge Science Park, to Astex the company I co-founded to work on cancer medicines, and to collaborations with India and Southern Africa on tuberculosis where many lives are impacted by HIV and TB.

Host: JP Arulanandam


21st May 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Dr Julie Ahringer - Wellcome Trust/Cancer Research UK Gurdon Institute, University of Cambridge

WT PhD programme seminar - Exploring chromatin and the landscape of transcription initiation in C. elegans

Chromatin is the substrate upon which DNA is regulated for events such as transcription, replication, and DNA repair. More recently, regulation at the level of chromatin has also been shown to impact mRNA post-transcriptional events.  Hundreds of chromatin-associated proteins are known, and many have activities such as modification or binding to histone tails, or nucleosome movement, and these are thought to alter local and/or higher order chromatin structure.  However how most chromatin proteins regulate chromatin structure and function is poorly understood.  We use the model organism C. elegans to address these questions as it has many features that make it especially well-suited for such studies.  The genome is small (30X smaller than human) and well-annotated, and there is a rich resource of chromatin mutants and RNAi knockdowns that make functional analysis of any gene straightforward.  Importantly, C. elegans has a complement of chromatin factors very similar to that of humans.

 

I will discuss our work on transcription initiation and elongation at promoters and enhancers, genome organizational principles inferred through chromatin state mapping and the role of CpG dinucleotides in chromatin accessibility and relationship with HOT regions in C. elegans and humans.

Host: Adrian Bird


7th May 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Professor Witold Filipowicz - Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Switzerland

WT PhD programme seminar - Mechanisms and regulation of miRNA repression and metabolism in mammalian cells

MiRNAs are ~20-nt-long regulatory RNAs expressed in eukaryotes. They regulate gene expression post-transcriptionally, by imperfectly base-pairing to 3’UTRs of mRNAs which results in translational repression and mRNA deadenylation and degradation. Most mammalian genes are predicted to be subject to miRNA regulation.

 

We will discuss current knowledge about the mechanism of miRNA-mediated repression, focusing on a role of GW182 proteins and the multi-subunit CCR4-NOT complex in translational repression and mRNA deadenylation. Our recent work revealed that CCR4-NOT complex mediates recruitment of the DEAD-box ATPase DDX6 to mRNA and that the interaction with CCR4-NOT activates ATPase activity   of DDX6 which appears to be required for the miRNA-mediated repression of translation. Recent work also revealed that biogenesis and turnover of miRNAs, and the miRNA-mediated repression itself, are highly regulated processes, involving a plethora of different protein factors. For example, miRNAs in retinal and hippocampal neurons turn over much faster than in non-neuronal cells and the miRNA turnover in neurons appears to be a subject of complex activity-dependent regulation. Some other examples of post-transcriptional control of miRNAs will also be discussed.

Host: David Tollervey


17th Feb 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Professor Peter Becker - Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München, Germany

WT PhD programme seminar - Get the numbers right or die: how male fruit flies get away with just one X chromosome

Eukaryotic genomes are highly evolved systems of gene expression that are challenged by sex chromosome aneuploidies, In humans and fruit flies the females bear a diploid genome with two X chromosome, but the male genome only contains a single X. This reduced dose is compensated for by an elaborate regulatory 'dosage compensation' process, which increases most of the transcription on the X in the two-fold range. The dosage compensation machinery comprises five protein subunits, amongst which three are enzymes, and a long, non-coding RNA. How does this machinery identify the X chromosome so stringently? How can transcription levels be tuned in such a fine range? Which role does the non-coding RNA play in answering these questions will reveal fundamental principles of gene regulation that are harnessed for the task of genome balancing.

Host: Irina Stancheva


10th Feb 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Dr Chris Smith - University of Cambridge

WT PhD programme seminar - Understanding the roles of alternative pre-mRNA splicing in shaping smooth muscle cell transcriptomes

Alternative pre-mRNA splicing is a key molecular mechanism that allows diversification of expressed proteomes far beyond the limitations suggested by a simple "gene-count" of a genome. Many examples of functionally important alternative splicing events have been described, while diseases arising from disruption of alternative splicing show that not only is RNA splicing an essential step in gene expression, but that appropriate regulation of alternative splicing programmes is essential for healthy development. Analyses of alternative splicing have employed both molecular dissection of individual alternative splicing events, as well as global profiling and computational analyses of co-regulated programmes of alternative splicing. I will describe the use of both types of approach by my lab in the analysis of alternative splicing in smooth muscle cells.

 

Host: Steve West


20th Jan 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford Building
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Dr Hervé le Hir - CNRS, Paris

WT PhD programme seminar - The Exon Junction Complex, a multifaceted RNP complex dissected by different approaches from single-molecule to RNA-seq

To function properly, eukaryotic messenger RNAs (mRNAs) must contain a complete open reading frame to serve as an adequate template for protein synthesis, but also all the information that specifies their export from the nucleus, subcellular localization, translation, and stability. Much of this information is carried by the proteins composing mRNA-protein (mRNP) particles. My group is studying the multiprotein exon junction complex (EJC) deposited onto nuclear mRNAs by the splicing machinery. The EJC is composed of a dozen proteins and accompanies mRNAs to the cytoplasm to communicate with various machineries involved in export, translation, degradation, and subcellular localization. The EJC is also involved in the quality control process of nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) that eliminates aberrant mRNAs. In order to dissect EJC structure and the mechanisms by which it achieves its multiple functions, we are combining various approaches including biochemistry, structural and molecular biology, transcriptomics as well as single-molecule biophysics (magnetic tweezers). One peculiar aspect of the EJC is that it contains two RNA helicases, the DEAD-box eIF4AIII serving as an RNA clamp and Upf1 essential for NMD. Therefore, the EJC is a perfect model to understand how these ATP-dependent molecular motors are regulated by their binding partners.


Host: Atlanta Cook


16th Jan 2014
12:00
Darwin Building
G10

Maria Christophorou, Gurdon Institute, University of Cambridge

Molecular mechanisms and cellular functions controlled by citrullination

Host: David Tollervey/Robin Allshire


13th Jan 2014
12:00
Daniel Rutherford
G27 Lecture Theatre 1

Dr Aurelie Bertin - Institut Curie, Paris

WT PhD programme seminar - Septins: ultrastructural plasticity of cytoskeletal multi-tasking proteins.

Septins are cytoskeletal filaments bound to the inner cell membrane. They are ubiquitous in eukaryotes and are essential for cell division. During cytokinesis, the last step of cell division, septins are arranged circumferentially around constriction sites. Septins are involved in building diffusion barriers for transmembrane proteins or proteins anchored to the membrane. By complementary electron microscopy and cryo-electron microscopy methods we have carried out a global study from the molecule to the cell. Using single particle image analysis and cryo-tomography, we have shown that the ultrastructural organization of septins is highly variable both in vitro and in situ. First, we have determined by single particle image analysis that the budding yeast septin complex, assemble into a linear, symetric and octameric oligomer. This minimal complex can then assemble into a nonpolar paired filament in low salt conditions [1]. To mimic the septin-membrane interaction, we have used biomimetic assays. Hence, we have shown that PI(4,5)P2 interacts specifically with septins and organizes septins in a novel manner [2]. Conversely, septins are able to deform vesicles into plaque-like structures.  Besides, we have described the organization of septin filaments in situ for the first time within budding yeast dividing cells, by electron cryo-tomography [3]. Besides we have  recently shown that septins from higher eukaryotes are able to bundle and curve actin filaments.

1. Bertin, A., et al., Saccharomyces cerevisiae septins: supramolecular organization of heterooligomers and the mechanism of filament assembly. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2008. 105(24): P. 8274-9.
2. Bertin, A., et al., Phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate promotes budding yeast septin filament assembly and organization. J Mol Biol, 2010. 404(4): P. 711-31.
3. Bertin, A., et al., Three-dimensional ultrastructure of the septin filament network in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Mol Biol Cell, 2012. 23(3): P. 423-32.

Host: Julie Welburn


26th Jun 2013
16:00
Michael Swann Building
Main Lecture Theatre

Professor Adrian Bird

Wellcome Trust PhD Programme in Cell Biology Symposium Lecture - Epigenetics and Rett syndrome

Autism is genetically complex, but several conditions within the autistic spectrum have simple causes. Because of their known origin, single gene disorders of this kind are more straightforward to understand and may hold lessons that apply broadly. An example is Rett syndrome, a profound autism spectrum disorder, which almost exclusively results from mutations in the MECP2 gene. Normally this gene makes a protein that binds to sites on DNA that are chemically altered by DNA methylation. In fact the MECP2 protein appears to interpret this “epigenetic” mark to affect gene expression. Why should loss of this function affect the brain? Are the resulting defects reversible? What are the prospects for therapy for this and perhaps related conditions? Professor Bird will draw upon the latest research that addresses these questions.

Host: Wellcome Trust PhD Programme in Cell Biology