The Department of Biochemistry's weekly BCH 252 seminar series is presented this week by
Dr. Yilun Liu, Professor & Associate Chair, Department of Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics, Vice Dean, Irell & Manella Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Beckman Research Institute City of Hope
Seminar Title: "When transcription meets replication"
Abstract: As an independent faculty for the past 15 years, Dr. Liu has been focusing on studying genomic instability and DNA repair in cancer etiology. Dr. Liu will present a current research area in her laboratory at the Department of Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics at City of Hope in understanding the mechanism by which cells prevent the formation of endogenous DNA breaks as a consequence of unresolved collision between a replication fork and a transcription machinery or a transcription-induced R-loop. Her group recently discovered specific SUMO modifications on topoisomerase I and replication factor PCNA as key events to resolve R-loops and transcription-replication collisions to avoid transcription-induced DNA break formation during DNA synthesis. Dr. Liu’s group identified key protein factors important for sensing transcription-replication conflicts and promoting SUMO conjugations of topoisomerase I and PCNA for conflict resolution. Because cancer cells have a high demand for both transcription and replication to support their rapid cell growth, these cells generate significantly more collision events than normal cells. Therefore, targeting enzymes important for resolving transcription-replication conflicts would lead to high levels of DNA breaks especially in cancer cells. Her laboratory is currently funded by two R01s to explore the potential of targeting SUMO modifications of topoisomerase I and PCNA in enhancing transcription-replication associated DNA break formation in cancer cells.
Faculty Host: Dr. Jeff Perry, email@example.com