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Research interests

In eukaryotes, DNA is packaged into chromatin.  The basic unit of chromatin is the nucleosome, formed by the wrapping of DNA around an octamer of histones proteins.  In order for efficient DNA repair to occur, manipulation of chromatin structure is necessary.   These changes to chromatin organisation include covalent modification of histone proteins, incorporation of histone variants and ATP-dependent chromatin remodelling and defects in these processes can result in genome instability, one of the hallmarks of cancer cells. 

The focus of our research group is in understanding the function of chromatin and ATP-dependent chromatin remodelling complexes in maintenance of genome stability.  We are complementing investigation of the role of chromatin remodellers in mammalian cells with studies in budding yeast and in vitro, biochemical work, in order to elucidate mechanistic detail of how these complexes protect genome integrity. By gaining a more complete understanding of the function of chromatin remodelling in preventing genome instability, we aim to inform treatment strategies and reveal novel drug targets.


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