[Seminar] "Deconstructing DNA methylation: provocative insights from non-model species" by Dr. Alex de Mendoza


Wednesday, November 6, 2019 - 15:30 to 16:30


C209, Center Building


Molecular Genetics Unit (Rokhsar Unit) would like to invite you to a seminar by Dr. Alexandre de Mendoza from The University of Western Australia

Title: "Deconstructing DNA methylation: provocative insights from non-model species"

Cytosine DNA methylation is the most studied epigenetic modification in eukaryotic genomes, however it remains poorly understood. Silencing of transposable elements has been proposed as one of the conserved roles of cytosine methylation across all eukaryotes. Additionally, vertebrates are considered exceptional among animals given the pervasive methylation of CpG dinucleotides in the genome, which has been interpreted as a more complex mode of genome regulation. My work challenges these established dogmas using comparative epigenomics of previously neglected taxa from divergent eukaryotic lineages, including dinoflagellates, charophytes, centipedes and sponges. Specifically, my results blur the antagonistic relationship between transposable elements and cytosine methylation, as well as refute the uniqueness of vertebrate methylation patterns questioning its putative implication in the evolution of vertebrate complexity.

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