BMC-GPMLS: Distinguished lecture series
Institute of Molecular Biotechnology, Vienna, Austria
Title: Yeast genetics in mammalian stem cells
Abstract: All somatic mammalian cells carry two copies of chromosomes (diploidy). Some organisms such as yeast are haploid, they carry a single set of chromosomes. Organisms with a single copy of their genome provide a basis for genetic analyses where any recessive mutation will show a clear phenotype due to the absence of a second gene copy. The laboratory of Josef Penninger has managed to create a mouse stem cell line with only one chromosome set. The novel stem opens the possibility of combining the power of a haploid genome with pluripotency of embryonic stem cells to uncover fundamental biological processes in defined cell types at a genomic scale. Moreover, the technology can be used to perform screens for potential anti-cancer drugs.
Josef Penninger is the founding scientific director of the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna. His group was the first to demonstrate in vivo that RANKL stimulates the development of osteoclasts, which break down bone tissue. The basic approach of the Penninger group is to genetically manipulate and change genes in mice and to determine the effects of these mutations on the development of the whole organism and in diseases. His group has also developed new models in flies to model diseases at the whole genome level and compare such models with human SNP maps. From these studies, the team is trying to establish basic principles of physiology and basic mechanisms of disease pathogenesis. Current research of the Penninger laboratory focuses on heart and lung diseases, cancer and bone diseases.
Time: Wednesday, June 28th, 11.00-12.00
Location: Fróði auditorium, Sturlugata 8