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Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

BCMB Seminar: Dr. Brett Schofield ‘07

Date: 4:00pm - 5:30pm PDT February 5 PST Location: J.R. Howard Hall 123

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J.R. Howard Hall 123

Satb1 as Traffic Cop: Directing Chromatin Compaction, Transcription, and Molecular Flux

The ability to carefully regulate one’s genome in response to environmental cues is a fundamental requirement for life.  A recent unexpected discovery is that the location and organization of individual chromatin strands can have a significant impact on gene expression.  However, the consequences of specific chromatin configurations and the mechanisms that generate them are only beginning to be understood.

In this talk, I will discuss my graduate research that led to the discovery of the unique capabilities and functionality of one chromatin architectural protein – the Special AT-rich sequence Binding protein 1 (Satb1).  My work investigated both basic biophysical questions – like how Satb1 is able to engage different DNA sequences – and complex inquiries into how Satb1 shapes the local and global chromatin architecture.  I will talk about how Satb1 is capable of both compacting and decompacting chromatin, how this ability allows it to serve as both an activator and repression of gene transcription, and finally how it modulates the diffusive path taken by inert molecules in the nucleus.

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Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

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