I study the molecular mechanisms regulating chromosome dynamics during meiosis. Using a combination of chemical and genetic approaches, I investigate the function of cell cycle kinases during the meiotic prophase I to metaphase I transition (G2/MI).
Coordination of the dynamic chromosomal events during meiosis is critical to ensure accurate chromosome segregation. Missegregation of chromosomes during meiosis causes chromosomal aneuploidies, which result in miscarriage and genetic disorders such as Down syndrome. Previous studies conducted in budding yeast have implicated Aurora kinases (AURKs) and Polo-like Kinases (PLKs) as factors impacting a number of critical events during the G2/MI transition. To gain further insight into the functions of AURKs and PLKs during mammalian meiosis, I am utilizing a mouse model to study the function of these kinases during the following cellular processes:
Completion of homologous recombination
Disassembly of the synaptonemal complex
Faithful production of a bipolar spindle
Past research experience:
Mechanisms of microsatellite repeat expansion during replication
Development of an RT-PCR method for Campylobacter jejuni serotype attribution
Analysis of mucosal gene expression to Campylobacter infection in mice
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