Research in the Department of Cell Biology is focused on understanding molecular mechanisms of gene regulation in eukaryotic cells. Using mammalian cells, yeast, viruses, fruit flies and transgenic mice, we are investigating mechanisms of DNA replication and repair, control of the cell cycle and apoptosis, roles for transcriptional regulation and chromatin structure in gene expression, RNA processing, intracellular trafficking, membrane fusion and budding, mechanisms of generating antibody diversity, and the functions of cell surface sugars.
In the News
The Department of Cell Biology would like to extend a very warm welcome to our newest faculty member, Assistant Professor Dr. Kira Gritsman. Dr. Gritsman got her MD/PhD at New York University School of Medicine, where she performed her PhD research in Dr. Alexander Schier’s lab on the roles of nodal signaling during zebrafish gastrulation and left-right patterning. After an Internal Medicine residency at Columbia University Medical Center, she completed her subspecialty training in Hematology and Oncology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. She did her postdoctoral research in the labs of Dr. Gary Gilliland and Dr. Thomas Roberts at Dana-Farber on the roles of the PI3K/Akt pathway in hematopoiesis and leukemia. She is a recipient of an American Society of Hematology Fellow Scholar Award and a K08 Career Development award from the National Cancer Institute. Her lab's current work continues to focus on signaling pathways in hematopoietic stem cells and leukemic stem cells, and on resistance mechanisms to kinase inhibitors in leukemia.
Dr. Ulrich Steidl has received a prestigious Scholar Award from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for his work on the role of transcription and epigenetic regulation of hematopoietic and leukemic stem cells. A number of findings made by his research team also have implications for treating blood cancers including myeloid leukemias and myelodysplastic syndromes. Congratulations!
Dr. Pamela Stanley was awarded with the eighth annual Marshall S. Horwitz, M.D. Faculty Prize for Research Excellence. The prize will be awarded at a community-wide ceremony on Monday, February 3, 2014, during which Dr. Stanley will deliver a lecture, “Glycans that Regulate Development and Notch Signaling,” describing the work that led to her selection. Congratulations to Dr. Pamela Stanley.
Dr. Britta Will, a postdoctoral research fellow in the lab of Dr. Ulrich Steidl, was awarded with the 2013 annual Dennis Shields Postdocoral Research Prizes. Congratulations to Dr. Britta Will and the lab of Dr. Ulrich Steidl.
From the Kielian Lab - Aihua Zheng, Fei Yuan, Lara M. Kleinfelter, & Margaret Kielian. A toggle switch controls the low pH-triggered rearrangement and maturation of the dengue virus envelope proteins. Nature Communications 5, Article number: 3877 doi:10.1038/ncomms4877.
• Formation of infectious dengue virus in host cells requires a rearrangement of viral envelope proteins that is triggered by the acidic environment within secretory vesicles. Here we describe the molecular mechanism underlying such rearrangement.
From the Ye Lab - Wei X, Xu M, Wei Y, Huang F, Zhao T, Li X, Feng R, Ye BH. The addition of rituximab to CHOP therapy alters the prognostic significance of CD44 expression. J Hematol Oncol. 2014 Apr 16;7(1):34. [Epub ahead of print]
• Although focused on one marker in lymphomas, this study adds to the notion that cancer prognostic models need to be constantly revised as the therapies evolve.
From the Stanley Lab - Yuan F, Snapp EL, Novikoff PM, Suadicani SO, Spray DC, Potvin B, Wolkoff AW, Stanley P. Human liver cell trafficking mutants: characterization and whole exome sequencing. PLoS One. 2014 Jan 23;9(1):e87043. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0087043. eCollection 2014.
• Liver cell mutants defective in endocytosis and trafficking were analyzed by exome sequencing. A new dominant mutation in RAB22A (I34F) contributed to the Trf4 phenotype.
From the Schildkraut Lab - Gerhardt J, Tomishima MJ, Zaninovic N, Colak D, Yan Z, Zhan Q, Rosenwaks Z, Jaffrey SR, and C.L. Schildkraut. The DNA replication program is altered at the FMR1 locus in fragile X embryonic stem cells. Molecular Cell 53(1):19-31 (2014) PMID: 24289922.
• This study provides evidence that the DNA replication fork direction is critically involved in CGG repeat expansion, the underlying cause of fragile X syndrome.
From the Kielian Lab - Ooi, Y.S.*, K.M. Stiles*, C.Y. Liu*, G.M. Taylor, and M. Kielian. Genome-wide RNAi screen identifies novel host proteins required for alphavirus entry. *Equal contribution. PLoS Pathogens 9 (12): e1003835. (2013) PMID: 24367265.
• Using a whole genome siRNA screen, we identified and defined the mechanism of FUZ and TSPAN9, two novel host proteins that promote alphavirus entry.