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Gene Expression & Epigenetics

What are Gene Expression & Epigenetics?

“Gene expression” refers to the process by which a DNA sequence (i.e. a gene) is used to make a specific RNA or protein, while "epigenetics" refers to the ways phenotypes are impacted by factors other than genetic sequence (e.g. gene repression by chromatin packing). Research into Gene Expression & Epigenetics aims to understand how our genes and the way they are regulated influence who we are. How is DNA passed safely to the next generation? How do parental life experiences impact offspring phenotypes without affecting their gene sequences? How do cells that contain the same DNA sequence end up looking so different from one other (e.g. one of your brain cells compared to one of your muscle cells)? Answering these questions will bring a new understanding to the code of life.

What is the impact of our research in Gene Expression & Epigenetics?

  • Environmental conditions experienced by parents can influence gene expression patterns in their offspring. Work in our department has identified new mechanisms of transgenerational inheritance where information is passed through the biologically paternal lineage to embryos developing in the uterus. Find out more here.
  • Studies of how bacteria make the walls that protect them from our immune system may lead to the development of new or improved antibiotics to address the growing threat of antibiotic resistance. Find out more here
  • Work in our department has developed a rapid evolution computational protocol whereby the fitness of thousands of mutations of any given gene can be assessed simultaneously. Find out more here.

 

Who's studying Genes Expression & Epigenetics?

  • Josué Flores Kim

    Josué Flores Kim, PhD

    Assistant Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology.

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Cellular Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Flores Kim lab studies how bacteria build their cell envelopes and how antimicrobials disrupt these processes.

    Key Words: bacterial cell envelope; antibiotic resistance; antibiotic tolerance

    Research Tools: We use a combination of classical, modern and chemical genetic screens with biochemical and high-resolution imaging analyses. 

    Broader Impact: drug resistant and tolerant bacterial infections

    he/him/his
    Office Location: LRB 915
    Lab Location: LRB 970 U
    Phone: 508-856-6260

    Lab Page

  • Anthony Imbalzano

    Anthony Imbalzano, PhD

    Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology; Associate Dean of Academic Affairs in the Morningside Graduate School for Biomedical Sciences; Associate Dean in the Office for Postdoctoral Scholars

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Cellular Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Imbalzano Lab studies the role of chromatin remodeling in cell fate specification and maintenance.

    Key Words: Chromatin remodeling, gene expression, development, cancer, mesenchymal cells, myogenesis, adipogenesis

    Research Tools: Cell Culture, M. musculus (mouse)

    Broader Impact: Breast Cancer

    he/him/his
    Office Location: LRB 813
    Lab Location: LRB 870 H
    Phone: 508-856-1029

    Lab Page

  • Francesca Massi

    Francesca Massi, PhD

    Associate Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Biophysics & Macromolecular Structures, Computational Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Massi lab uses their expertise in NMR Spectroscopy to understand the dynamics of protein-RNA interactions.

    Office Location: LRB 925
    Lab Location: LRB 960 B, 970 N
    Phone: 508-856-4501

    Lab Page

  • Thoru Pederson

    Thoru Pederson, PhD

    Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology; Vitold Arnett Professor of Cell Biology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Pederson lab researches RNA biosynthesis in the nucleolus. 

    Key Words: RNA biosynthesis; RNA-protein interactions; the nucleolus; chromosome dynamics

    Research Tools: mammalian cell culture

    he/him/his
    Office Location: LRB 821
    Lab Location: (n/a)
    Phone: 508-856-8667
     
    Lab Page

  • Peter Pryciak

    Peter Pryciak, PhD

    Associate Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Cellular Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: Dr. Pryciak studies how protein kinases regulate cell signaling and the cell cycle.

    Key Words: MAP kinases (MAPKs), cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs), short linear motifs (SLiMs)

    Research Tools: S. cerevisiae (yeast)

    Office Location: LRB 822
    Lab Location: LRB 870 P
    Phone: 508-856-8756
     
    Lab Page

  • Oliver J. Rando

    Oliver J. Rando, MD, PhD

    Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Cellular Biochemistry, Computational Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Rando Lab studies the role of epigenetic inheritance in programming health and disease.

    Key Words: epigenetics, chromatin, small non-coding RNA, embryology, spermatogenesis

    Research Tools: S. cerevisiae (yeast), M. musculus (mouse), C. elegans (nematode worm)

    Broader Impact: Paternal environments can affect diabetes, metabolic syndrome, anxiety, schizophrenia and more.

    he/him/his
    Office Location: LRB 906
    Lab Location: LRB 940 A-C &
    LRB 970 X-Y
    Phone: 508-856-8879

    Lab Page

  • Sy Redding

    Sy Redding, PhD

    Assistant Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Biophysics & Macromolecular Structures, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Redding Lab seeks to discover general physical principles that affect how genetic information is organized and accessed.

    Key Words: Chromatin organization, protein-DNA interactions, Epigenetics, single molecule biophysics, phase separation

    Research Tools: single molecule techniques, TIRF microscopy, confocal microscopy.

    he/him/his
    Office Location: LRB 926
    Lab Location: LRB 960 B
    Phone: 774-455-6635
     
    Lab Page

  • Nick Rhind

    Nick Rhind, PhD

    Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Cellular Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Rhind lab studies cell size regulation and temporal coordination of DNA replication

    Key Words: DNA replication, cell cycle, cell size, replication kinetics

    Research Tools: S. cerevisiae (yeast)

    Broader Impact: Cancer

    Office Location: LRB 904
    Lab Location: LRB 940 E-D
    Phone: 508-856-8316

    Lab Page

  • Sean Ryder

    Sean Ryder, PhD

    Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology; Vice Chair of Outreach for the Biochemistry & Molecular Biology Department

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Cellular Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Ryder Lab studies the role of egg (maternal) mRNA in embryonic development.

    Key Words:
    RNA, oogenesis, embryogenesis, germline development, protein-RNA interactions

    Research Tools: C. elegans (nematode worm)

    Broader Impact: Reproductive health, microdeletion syndromes, genome editing, RNA therapeutics

    he/him/his
    Office Location: LRB 906
    Lab Location: LRB 970 W
    Phone: 508-856-1372
     
    Lab Page

  • Summer Thyme

    Summer Thyme, PhD

    Assistant Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biotechnology

    Type: Primary

    Areas of Research: Biochemical Mechanisms, Cellular Biochemistry, Gene Expression & Epigenetics

    Research Interest: The Thyme Lab studies neurodevelopmental disorders using zebrafish.

    Key Words
    : zebrafish, neurodevelopmental disorder, intellectual disability, Down syndrome, drug discovery, computation, genomics, mRNA, scRNA-seq, genome-editing, CRISPR, protein engineering

    Research Tools: zebrafish, CRISPR

    Broader Impact: developing treatments for intellectual disability in neurodevelopmental disorders.

    Office Location: LRB 803
    Lab Location: LRB 870 R/S
    Phone: 508-856-3251
     
    Lab Page

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