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How can epigenetic changes cause disease?


The way the genome is packaged into chromatin in eukaryotic cells provides the means of organizing and regulating access to the underlying genomic information. Simon Elsässers research at SciLifeLab focuses on applying new synthetic and chemical biology methods to understand chromatin structure and function.

Simon Elsässer_web

Simon develops tools to engineer proteins in living cells based on genetic code expansion and unnatural amino acid mutagenesis. This research will help to understand how aberrant epigenetic changes cause disease, for example how tumor suppressor genes – important guardians of the genome – are switched off to promote cancer. It will provide molecular level information for developing therapeutic strategies to correct such epigenetic mistakes.

“I applied to the SciLifeLab fellows program since I was attracted by the ambitious program to concentrate cutting edge research infrastructure and young scientists in a joint institute“, said Simon Elsässer.

What you didn’t know about Simon Elsässer: “Living in New York has turned me into a fairly competitive runner. The marathon is one of the biggest events in the city and many go from cheering to participating. By now I have run four more and I am aiming to break the 3 hours next time.”

Research group

December 2014
Camilla Wernersson