We are interested in the roles of chromatin remodeling proteins in regulation of embryonic stem (ES) cell identity. While a number of transcription factors that promote ES cell self-renewal (continued proliferation as stem cells) or differentiation are known, the mechanisms by which they regulate their gene targets are mysterious. Likewise, a number of chromatin regulators are important for ES cell self-renewal or differentiation, but their functions and genomic targets are poorly understood. We are taking genetic, genomic, biochemical and molecular approaches to study the roles of chromatin remodeling proteins in ES cells. These studies should lead to a greater understanding of how chromatin regulators interface with ES cell transcription factors to maintain the transcriptome, which should ultimately pave the way for the development of ES cell-based therapies for degenerative diseases.
Keywords: Stem Cell Biology, Chromosome Structure & Dynamics, Cancer, Gene Regulation, Systems Biology