RuthenLab

Laboratory of Chromatin Biochemistry & Structure

 

The unifying theme of our lab is the elucidation of molecular mechanisms underlying genome management using the toolkits of biochemistry, chemical and structural biology; in particular, we are interested in how posttranslational modifications and noncoding RNA can control chromatin structure.  Our research spans several traditional disciplines, ranging from discovery biochemistry and chemical biology to mechanistic characterization with biophysical methods coupled with X-Ray structure to address fundamental questions in chromatin biology.  Projects ideally will transition from discovery biology to detailed molecular and structural investigation.

About Us

Chromatin is the physiologic form of the genome. Rather than mere packaging, chromatin structure appears to serve as the master regulator of underlying DNA function.  Local chromatin structure may be stable for decades, yet is sufficiently dynamic to respond to signaling pathways, potentiating transcriptional program changes in development.  Indeed cellular identity and changes thereof are intimately connected to chromatin states-- keeping a neuron a neuron and not a liver cell.  



What are the molecular factors that control chromatin structure?

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