Genetic networks that regulate tissue homeostasis and cancer
My laboratory focuses on understanding the molecular basis of gene expression selectivity. Transcriptional networks enable selective gene expression programs during many physiological and developmental processes. They are critical for maintenance of the differentiated state and deregulation of such networks is associated with cancer. Yet, the molecular mechanisms that establish and maintain gene expression selectivity are poorly understood.
In this regard, we recently identified novel genes that serve as “molecular selectors” and play key roles in establishing gene expression selectivity. The action of selectors is mediated, in part, by the ability to impact differential recruitment of transcriptional co-factors essential for transcription.
Our current projects include: 1, characterizing the role of SUMO-Targeted-Ubiquitin Ligase proteins in Drosophila development and human cancer; 2, identifying genes involved in selective innate immune responses to distinct pathogens; 3, delineating the genes that regulate adult gut homeostasis at the genetic and genomic level, with a focus on genes that maintain the balance between progenitor and differentiated cells. We employ advanced genetic and genomic tools to study transcriptional networks in the Drosophila model, mammalian cells, and patient-derived specimens. More about the lab can be found at: http://www.technioncancer.co.il