The RNA Transcript, May 10, 2021
Alumna, April 2021; Faculty Mentor: Prof. Nouri Neamati

My research involves drug discovery where I focus on identifying novel anticancer agents for the treatment of various cancers especially pancreatic cancer being one of the most aggressive malignancies. I am always excited about my research and about medicinal chemistry as an interdisciplinary science that contributes to understanding complex diseases and to the development of effective therapeutics.

Wednesday, May 12, 10:00 am pm ET | U-M Bioinformatics, Dissertation Defense

"The Genetic Heterogeneity of Relapsed Refractory Multiple Myeloma"
Nguyen Vo, Bioinformatics; Faculty Mentor: Arul Chinnaiyan, M.D., Ph.D.
Thursday, May 13, 10:00 am ET | U-M Chemical Engineering, Dissertation Defense

"Isolation and Characterization of Circulating Biomarkers to Predict Patient Outcomes in Late-Stage Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer"
Emma Purcell, Chemical Engineering; Faculty Mentor: Sunitha Nagrath, Ph.D.
Thursday, May 13, 10:00 am ET | U-M Pharmacology, Dissertation Defense

"S-Palmitoylation as a Regulatory Mechanism for Localization and Function of Neuronal Substrates Involved In Action Potential Initiation and Propagation"
Julie Gupta, Pharmacology; Faculty Mentor: Paul Michael Jenkins, Ph.D.
Thursday, May 13, 1:00 pm ET | U-M Chemical Biology, Dissertation Defense

"Deciphering the Molecular Recognition Rules of β-Barrel Coactivator Motif"
Samantha De Salle, Chemical Biology; Faculty Mentor: Anna Mapp, Ph.D.
Monday, May 17, 4:00–5:00 pm ET | U-M Center for RNA Biomedicine

“Annotation and Characterization of Human Protein-coding Small Open Reading Frames”
Thomas Martinez, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow, Salk Institute for Biological Studies
June 23–25, 2021 | UMASS RNA Therapeutics
RNA Therapeutics: From Concept to Clinic symposium, to be held virtually.
Early bird registration for RNA Collaborative members only - offer ends June 1st: Students and Postdocs; Academic Faculty, Staff & Nonprofits  
For press releases and blog articles about your upcoming top journal publications,

Our members' publications are available through Altmetric. Five queries are currently available: "RNA," "microRNA," "Transcriptome," "Translation," and "Molecule." Please make sure to have at least one of these key words in your title or abstract. Below are recent highlights.
ALS-associated mutation FUS-R521C causes DNA damage and RNA splicing defects

Abstract: Autosomal dominant mutations of the RNA/DNA binding protein FUS are linked to familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FALS); however, it is not clear how FUS mutations cause neurodegeneration. Using transgenic mice expressing a common FALS-associated FUS mutation (FUS-R521C mice), we found that mutant FUS proteins formed a stable complex with WT FUS proteins and interfered with the normal interactions between FUS and histone deacetylase 1 (HDAC1). ...
Enhanced detection of expanded repeat mRNA foci with hybridization chain reaction, Glineburg, M.R., Zhang, Y., Krans, A. et al. . acta neuropathol commun 9, 73 (2021).

Abstract: Transcribed nucleotide repeat expansions form detectable RNA foci in patient cells that contribute to disease pathogenesis. The most widely used method for detecting RNA foci, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), is powerful but can suffer from issues related to signal above background. Here we developed a repeat-specific form of hybridization chain reaction (R-HCR) as an alternative method for detection of repeat RNA foci in two neurodegenerative disorders: C9orf72 associated ALS and frontotemporal dementia (C9 ALS/FTD) and Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome. ...
A translational riboswitch coordinates nascent transcription-translation coupling, Surajit Chatterjee, Adrien Chauvier, Shiba S. Dandpat, Irina Artsimovitch and Nils G. Walter, PNAS April 20, 2021 118 (16) e2023426118;

Abstract: Bacterial messenger RNA (mRNA) synthesis by RNA polymerase (RNAP) and first-round translation by the ribosome are often coupled to regulate gene expression, yet how coupling is established and maintained is ill understood. ... A model emerges wherein mRNA structure and transcription factors coordinate to dynamically modulate the efficiency of transcription–translation coupling.
A PRC2-independent function for EZH2 in regulating rRNA 2′-O methylation and IRES-dependent translation, Yi, Y., Li, Y., Meng, Q. et alNat Cell Biol 23, 341–354 (April 2021).

Abstract: Dysregulated translation is a common feature of cancer. Uncovering its governing factors and underlying mechanism are important for cancer therapy. .... Our findings reveal a previously unrecognized role of zeste homologue 2 (EZH2) in cancer-related translational regulation.
For Fun
This technique uses an electron beam to image samples which have been cryogenically frozen.
(answer next week!)
X-ray crystallography
Liquid chromatography
LAST WEEK QUESTION: In most cases, how much smaller are viruses than bacteria?

ANSWER: 140 times smaller than bacteria.
Most viruses vary in diameter from 20 nanometres (nm; 0.0000008 inch) to 250–400 nm; the largest, however, measure about 500 nm in diameter and are about 700–1,000 nm in length. Only the largest and most complex viruses can be seen under the light microscope at the highest resolution. Any determination of the size of a virus also must take into account its shape, since different classes of viruses have distinctive shapes. Source: Britannica
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