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Using C. elegans to learn principles of eukaryotic chromatin regulation

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All nuclear events take place in the context of chromatin, the organization of genomic DNA with histones and hundreds of associated proteins and RNAs. Regulation of the composition and structure of chromatin controls transcription and other nuclear processes, and is important for cell fate decisions, the expression of cell identity, the maintenance of pluripotency, and the transformation to cancer. However, our knowledge of chromatin structure and function is still at a basic level. We use C. elegans to address these questions because it has a complement of core chromatin factors very similar to that of humans, a small well-annotated genome (30x smaller than human), RNAi for loss of function studies, and well-characterised cell fates. I will discuss our work on transcription regulation and genome organization, such as properties and activities of promoters and enhancers, and principles of genome organization inferred from chromatin state mapping.

This talk is part of the Computational and Systems Biology series.

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