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Research Overview

Successful propagation of nuclei, and the genome contained within their walls, is vital for an organism’s survival. In the Jaspersen lab, we are interested in how eukaryotic cells maintain the integrity of their genome. Our work follows two partially overlapping themes: the duplication and function of microtubule-organizing centers and the structure and regulation of the nuclear envelope.

 

EM image of the yeast nucleus [left] and illustration depicting both the spindle pole body and nuclear pore complex.

Although the double lipid bilayer that forms the nuclear envelope is often viewed as a fortress, the inner and outer nuclear membranes are highly dynamic structures that undergo changes throughout development and differentiation, in mitosis and meiosis, and in diseased and dying cells. We use a combination of genetic, molecular, cytological and biochemical approaches to study inner nuclear membrane proteins and understand how these components contribute to the unique properties of the nuclear envelope, such as its mechanical stiffness, distinctive lipid composition and ability to organize chromosomes.

 

While the nuclear envelope serves as a guardian of the genome throughout interphase, it poses a formidable barrier as cells prepare to divide.  We are interested in the diverse array of strategies employed by eukaryotes to unite microtubules and their organizing centers with chromosomes during mitosis, as well as understanding how the nuclear envelope and its components are distributed during cell division.

 

Most of our work is performed in genetically tractable yeast systems, including Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Schizosaccharomyces pombe. The relative ease of molecular and cell biological analysis in these systems allows us to interrogate inner nuclear membrane composition and to study spindle formation and nuclear envelope remodeling using a range of approaches from classical genetics and electron microscopy to state-of-the-art imaging and genomics, providing excellent training for students and postdocs.

 

Individual projects in the Jaspersen lab are driven by members’ research interests in nuclear biology and/or cell division. Learn more on our Research page and by visiting the Members page to see what the lab is working on.


Strain and Plasmid Requests

Instructions on ordering any of our published reagents, and how to avoid a long wait times. Standard delivery is normally 2 - 3 weeks.

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Research Highlights

Summaries of recent peer-reviewed research, scientific collaboration, and scholarly publications from the Jaspersen Lab!

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Meet our lab!

Read about the diverse backgrounds and experience of the talented members who contribute
to our amazing research team.

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