Epigenetics

Meissner Laboratory

Our laboratory is a mixed group of experimental and computational biologists in the Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology (HSCRB).  We use genomic tools to study developmental and stem cell biology with a particular interest in the role of epigenetic regulation (Mikkelsen et al. Nature 2008; Koche, Smith et al. Cell Stem Cell 2011).

The term epigenetic refers to stable modifications of the chromatin and DNA that do not alter the primary nucleotide sequence. The global epigenetic makeup of a cell is a powerful indicator of its developmental state and potential. We...

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Hochedlinger Laboratory

Our lab tries to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying pluripotency and nuclear reprogramming. Pluripotency denotes the ability of cells, such as embryonic stem (ES) cells, to give rise to all cell types of the mammalian body, while nuclear reprogramming is the dedifferentiation of a specialized cell back into a pluripotent state. Reprogramming does not normally occur in vivo but can be achieved experimentally by nuclear transfer, ES cell-somatic cell fusion and by directly inducing embryonic genes in somatic cells, generating so-called induced pluripotent (iPS) stem cells.

Zon Laboratory

Dr. Leonard Zon's laboratory focuses on the developmental biology of hematopoiesis and cancer. Over the past five years, we have collected over 30 mutants affecting the hematopoietic system. Some of the mutants represent excellent animal models of human disease. For instance, the isolation of the ferroportin iron transporter was based on a mutant zebrafish and subsequently was shown to be mutated in patients with iron overload disorders. The mutants also represent interesting key regulatory steps in the development of stem cells. Recently, a mutant was found that lacked blood stem cells...

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