Event date:
Apr 21 2021 1:00 pm

Finding Your Place: Transcription Factors as Sensors and Modifiers of Chromatin

Abstract
Transcription factors only bind a minority of their motifs in large mammalian genomes. One potential explanation is that many motifs are not accessible for binding due to the action of chromatin and DNA methylation. We are using mammalian stem cell models to understand this important interplay between gene regulation, chromatin structure and DNA methylation. We study the dynamics of the epigenome and test regulatory models in cellular models by genetic perturbation and genome editing approaches. I will discuss our recent efforts in understanding how the sensitivity to DNA methylation can limit transcription factor binding in the context of the cell, the identification of a novel, strong activating factor and how transcription factors rely on specific chromatin remodelers for access to their binding sites.

Professor Dr. Dirk Schubeler will be our next guest speaker in the Zooming Molecular and Cellular Biology Colloquium series. An expert in chromatin and gene regulation, he is one of the pioneers in using genome-wide approaches to uncover correlation of chromatin modifications with chromatin structure and function, and with processes of transcription and cell cycle. 

About the speaker:

Prof. Dr. Dirk Schubeler is Director of Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research and Professor of Molecular Biology in University of Basel in Switzerland. An expert in chromatin and gene regulation, he is one of the pioneers in using genome-wide approaches to uncover correlation of chromatin modifications with chromatin structure and function, and with processes of transcription and cell cycle. Professor Schubeler received his PhD in 1995 from Technical University, Braunschweig, Germany. After finishing his postdoc at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Dirk joined FMI in Basel as a junior group leader in 2003. He became senior group leader in 2008 and last year in 2020 he was appointed as Director of FMI. In 2021, he also became Professor of Molecular Biology at University of Basel. He is member of the EMBO and was Elected to Academia Europaea. He was awarded Friedrich Miescher Prize, Swiss Society for Biochemistry, VIVA Leading Scientist Award, ESCI Award for Excellence in Basic/Translational Research.