Advancing Epigenetics Towards Systems Biology

Patrick Heun

Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK

Centromere identity

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patrick heun

Understanding the epigenetic identity and nuclear organization of centromeres is the major focus in my lab. CenH3, a centromere-specific histone H3-variant essential for kinetochore assembly is considered as the key epigenetic centromere mark. By artificially targeting Drosophila cenH3 (CENP-A in humans, CID in Drosophila) as a CID-GFP-LacI fusion protein to stably integrated Lac Operator (LacO) arrays in Drosophila tissue culture, we could show that CID is both necessary and sufficient to nucleate heritable centromere function. Using this biosynthetic approach we are now interested to dissect different functional domains of cenH3 and quantify the binding parameters of cenH3 with other centromere proteins. In addition to genetic, developmental, biochemical, and cytological analysis, quantitative live imaging and time-lapse microscopy will be used as major tools in these studies.

Researcher involved:

  • Dr. Virginie Roure (Postdoc)
  • Georg Schade (PhD student)

Previous position: Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics, Freiburg, Germany

Latest publications

Identification of Drosophila centromere associated proteins by quantitative affinity purification-mass spectrometry.

26306323 - 2015-08-26
Data Brief 2015 Sep;4:544-50

Barth TK, Schade GO, Schmidt A, Vetter I, Wirth M, Heun P, Imhof A, Thomae AW

Both tails and the centromere targeting domain of CENP-A are required for centromere establishment.

25713413 - 2015-02-26
J Cell Biol 2015 Mar 2;208(5):521-31

Logsdon GA, Barrey EJ, Bassett EA, DeNizio JE, Guo LY, Panchenko T, Dawicki-McKenna JM, Heun P, Black BE

Fly versus man: Evolutionary impairment of nucleolar targeting affects the degradome of Drosophila's Taspase1.

25634959 - 2015-01-31
FASEB J 2015 Jan 29;

Wünsch D, Hahlbrock A, Heiselmayer C, Bäcker S, Heun P, Goesswein D, Stöcker W, Schirmeister T, Schneider G, Krämer OH, Knauer SK, Stauber RH

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