Dynamic regulation of RNA polymerase II (Pol II) at promoters and enhancers define cellular identities, and the cells’abilities to respond to external and internal stimuli. In human cells, three billion nucleotide pairs encode the instructions for RNA and protein synthesis, a code that is read by thousands of transcription factors and their co-regulators. How distinct cells utilize the genetic code is highly coordinated by DNA-protein interactions at promoters and distal regulatory elements, ultimately controlling the activity the transcription machinery across the genome.
The Molecular Genomics lab studies genome organization in high-resolution, and maps how chromatin architecture primes and directs cellular responses to stress and development. We further utilise and develop nucleotide-resolution techniques that track the process of nascent transcription across genes and enhancers. By using models such as stress response, differentiation and neurodegeneration, the mechanism that coordinate chromatin and nascent transcription are coupled to cellular state, development and disease progression.