Epigenetic Mechanisms: Inheritance of Histone States

Project: Research project

Project Details


Epigenetics is a phenomenon important for an overall increase in the complexity of the genome without
changes in gene sequence. Epigenetic phenotypes rely on stable inheritance of the binary state of individual
gene expression. However, the mechanism of epigenetic inheritance mediated by chromatin is not well
characterized, so my proposed research aims to further the understanding of chromatin epigenetics. My
working hypothesis is that epigenetic inheritance of gene expression patterns requires the templated, semi-
conservative duplication of histone post-translational modifications and of histone variants. In order to
experimentally test the existence of templated inheritance of histone modifications and histone variants
during the DMAsynthesis phase of the cell cycle, I plan to re-examine the nature of bulk histone inheritance
using newly developed tools, including specific antibodies against modified histones and labeled, purified
histone complexes. I will also develop a "chromatin replication assay," in which I will test for the existence of
gross duplication of particular modifications or variant deposition in an entire genome. Finally, I propose to
investigate histone methylation and deacetylation upon and after deposition during DMA replication.
Effective start/end date3/9/063/8/09


  • Genetics
  • Molecular Biology


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