Gerton Lab 2013

Research Summary

Chromosomes are organized in the nuclear space. This organization both influences and is influenced by many chromosomal processes such as replication, repair, gene expression, condensation, nucleolar function, and segregation. In the Gerton lab we are interested in the interplay between chromosome organization and preservation of genomic function. Our research program takes advantage of yeast and mammalian model systems and uses genomics, genetics, microscopy, molecular biology, and biochemistry to study processes that contribute to chromosome maintenance.

One group of evolutionarily conserved proteins that influence many different chromosomal processes are the structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) proteins.  These proteins are components of large ring shaped complexes that associate with chromosomes at many sites. There are three different types of SMC complexes: cohesin, condensin, and Smc5/6. Mutations that affect cohesin and Smc5/6 cause human developmental syndromes. Mutations in cohesin also act as drivers for cancer. Loss of cohesion in old oocytes contributes to chromosome loss, known as the maternal age effect. Understanding the defects in SMC regulated chromosome metabolism in aging, cancer, and development is a major focus of the Gerton lab. If we can elucidate how SMC complexes contribute to the maintenance of the genome we will understand how SMC complexes contribute to human health and disease.

A second evolutionarily conserved protein complex that contributes to chromosome maintenance is the kinetochore. Kinetochores are large macromolecular complexes that connect centromeres to microtubules for chromosome segregation. The Gerton lab is interested in the dynamics of centromeres and kinetochores over the cell cycle and how these dynamics are regulated.
News & Updates Recent Publications
February 2017 - Congratulations to our collaborator Dr. Francesca Duncan on her Fulbright Scholarship titled "Keeping Reproductive Science and Medicine Visible, Viable and Valuable through Education across the Globe"!

Xu 2015Dong Hwan Kim, Bethany Harris, Fei Wang, Chris Seidel, Scott McCroskey, and Jennifer L. Gerton.

Mms21 SUMO Ligase Activity Promotes Nucleolar Function in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Genetics. 2016. doi: 10.1534/genetics.115.181750 Abstract

December 2016 - Farewell to Amy Dowdle as she returns to New Zealand and the University of Otago! You've been an outstanding addition to Gerton Lab and we will all miss you!

Xu 2015Dong Hwan Kim, Andrew C. Box, Hua Li, and Jennifer L. Gerton.

Using fluorescent reporters in conjunction with cytometry and statistics to assess nuclear accumulation of ribosomal proteins. MiMB 2016. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-6545-8_13 Abstract

December 2016 - Congratulations to the first graduate from the Stowers Graduate Program - Kobe Yuen! A huge accomplishment - we couldn't be prouder! Good luck to you in all that you do!

Xu 2015Baoshan Xu, Madelaine Gogol, Karin Gaudenz, and Jennifer L. Gerton.

Improved transcription and translation with L-leucine stimulation of mTORC1 in Roberts syndrome. BMC Genomics. 2015. doi: 10.1186/s12864-015-2354-y Abstract

Baoshan Congrats

November 2016 - Congratulations and farewell to Baoshan Xu! Good luck in your terrific new position as Associate Professor at Sun Yat-Sen University - you'll be sorely missed!

Cover WebKobe Yuen, Baoshan Xu, Ian D. Krantz, and Jennifer L. Gerton.

NIPBL controls RNA biogenesis to prevent activation of the stress kinase PKR.Cell Reports.2015. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep. 2015.12.012. Abstract

Stowers has been selected to host an ASBMB Special Symposium:

Photo credit Marina Feric and Cliff Brangwynne

Zakari 2015Musinu Zakari, Rhonda Trimble Ross, Allison Peak, Marco Blanchette, Chris Seidel, and Jennifer L. Gerton.

The SMC Loader Scc2 Promotes ncRNA Biogenesis and Translational Fidelity.PLOS Genetics. 2015. doi: 10.1371/ journal.pgen.1005308. Abstract

We are pleased to announce that the Gerton Lab has been honored with designation as a Cornelia de Lange Syndrome Center for Excellence!

Zakari 2015Musinu Zakari, Kobe Yuen, and Jennifer L. Gerton.

Etiology and pathogenesis of the cohesinopathies.WIRES Developmental Biology. 2015. doi: 10.1002/wdev .190. Abstract

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