Our group focuses on two main projects:
1 Uncovering mechanisms of long noncoding RNA (LncRNA)-mediated gene silencing.
2 Using budding yeast heterochromatin as a model to comprehensively characterize a specific chromatin domain.
The genetics of budding yeast chromatin-mediated gene silencing have provided an extensive foundation for understanding chromatin biology in all eukaryotes. This model system is distinguished by the minimal set of components necessary for gene silencing. The next step for this model is to provide new insights through biochemistry. We have demonstrated that a functional yeast heterochromatin domain can be assembled in the test tube, and uncovered how versatile heterochromatic gene silencing is, even in its most stripped-down form in budding yeast.
- The interplay of heterochromatin and DNA replication
- Detailed biochemical analysis of interactions between RNA Polymerase II and silencing factors.
- Understanding the mechanism of directional spreading of the silencing structure along a chromatin fiber.
- How heterochromatin is re-established in an epigenetic pattern.
- Comprehensive characterization of the yeast heterochromatin interactome using quantitative proteomics.