Differential gene regulation and activity is the driving force that transforms a zygote into a complex multicellular organism. Genes important for embryo development are often also central players in cancer progression and are thus promising targets for the design of novel therapies.
It is increasingly clear that genetic information alone cannot explain organismal development, cell differentiation and cancer formation. Epigenetics is a rapidly growing research field that studies the different levels of gene regulation that affect cell identity and function. Understanding the various modes of epigenetic control, such as DNA methylation and histone protein modifications, is of central importance in contemporary biomedical sciences.
One of the pillars of normal cellular function is the maintenance of genome stability. Errors in genetic information arise constantly, caused by biochemical reactions in every cell, as well as from environmental factors, such as ionizing radiation, chemical pollutants and sun's ultraviolet light. These errors are corrected by the DNA repair machinery, defects in which can cause a number of diseases, including cancer. However, recent studies have also revealed novel roles for the DNA repair machinery in epigenetic control and in development. These roles are of central interest to IMB.
Our research currently centres on key questions in developmental biology, epigenetics, genome stability and related biomedical fields. These areas are producing exciting results that are transforming our understanding of how we develop and adapt to our environment, and how we age or develop diseases such as cancer.
- Computational Biology & Data Mining
- Chromatin Biology & Proteomics
- Quantitative Proteomics
- Superresolution Microscopy
- Biology of Non-coding RNA
- Genomic Views of Splicing Regulation
- Modelling of Biological Networks
- Telomere Biology
- DNA Demethylation & Reprogramming
- Gene Expression & DNA Methylation
- Molecular Epigenetics
- Development & RNA Processing
- Cell Biology of Genome Maintenance
- Developmental and Stem Cell Biology
- Epigenetic Regulation of Development and Disease
- Maintenance of Genome Stability
- Structural Chronobiology