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Unexpected complex dynamics of cellular transcriptional response

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Florian Markowetz.

A major component of the response of cells to changing conditions is a shift of the transcriptome to a new state which may be more adequate for facing the new environment. The time dependence of this shift is of considerable interest and is often inferred from measurements of mRNA concentrations.

We formulate a refined model for the dynamics of pre-mRNA and mRNA concentrations and show that the temporal profiles of pre-mRNA are much more suitable than those of mRNA for reconstruction of the transcript production profiles. By monitoring time-dependent changes of pre-mRNA abundance in MCF10A cells stimulated by EGF , we show that in general, production profiles exhibit different kinds of interesting and unexpected forms. In order to increase expression of specific genes to some high desired level in a short time, cells use a strategy of production overshoot for a relatively brief interval.

A genome wide view shows while these production profiles are closely reflected by the time dependence of the pre-mRNA, the corresponding mRNA profiles (which also exhibit unexpected complexity) are often uncorrelated with transcript production.

Hosted by Nitzan Rosenfeld.

This talk is part of the Seminars on Quantitative Biology @ CRUK Cambridge Institute series.

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