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Research Abstracts Online
January 2010 - March 2011

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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
College of Biological Sciences
Medical School
Department of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development

PI: David I. Greenstein

Control of Oocyte Meiotic Maturation in Caenorhabditis elegans

The long-term of this group’s research is to define the mechanisms by which intercellular signaling coordinates meiosis and fertilization in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. In sexually reproducing animals, oocytes arrest at diplotene or diakinesis and resume meiosis (meiotic maturation) in response to hormones. Chromosome segregation errors in female meiosis I are the leading cause of human birth defects, and age-related changes in the hormonal environment of the ovary are a suggested cause. Previous work by this group established C. elegans as a genetic paradigm for studying hormonal control of meiotic maturation. A major part of this work involves isolating C. elegans mutants with defects in meiotic maturation control processes. The researchers are using MSI resources to facilitate the use of next-generation DNA sequencing technologies for identification of mutations in whole genome sequencing runs. They are currently working to establish the bioinformatics pipeline so that they might acquire primary sequencing data through the BMGC and analyze it in-house. A related aspect of this work involves using biochemistry to purify ribonucleoprotein particles that function in regulating translation during the meiotic maturation process. MSI resources are facilitating analysis of microrrays data and RNA-Seq data.

Group Members

Alexander Boyanov, Columbia University, New York, New York
Sengseop Kim, Graduate Student
Caroline Spike, Research Associate