Biological Sciences

Events and seminars

Monday Seminar Series - 'mRNA cap regulation in pluripotency and differentiation'

Professor Victoria Cowling - School of life Sciences, University of Dundee

13th March 2017 at 12:00pm [Download iCalendar / .ics file]

Daniel Rutherford, G.27, LT1

mRNA caps are a collection of structures which select transcripts for processing and translation.  We investigate how cellular signalling pathways regulate mRNA cap formation by influencing capping enzyme expression, activity and localisation.  Formation of the initial mRNA cap structure, 7-methylguanosine, is completed by RNMT-RAM.   RNMT is the cap methyltransferase common to all eukaryotes.  Vertebrates also express RAM, a RNMT-activating subunit.   The talk will cover the role of RAM in the maintenance of pluripotency in embryonic stem cells and its role in neural differentiation.  In embryonic stem cells, RAM expression is high and is required for pluripotency-associated gene expression.  During differentiation, ERK1/2-dependent phosphorylation results in RAM degradation, which is required for the emergence of neural precursors.  In addition to its role in mRNA cap methylation, we have discovered a role for RAM in gene-specific transcription.  In embryonic stem cells, RAM has a global impact on translation and also co-ordinates the expression of pluripotency-associated genes.

Host David Tollervey

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