Talk by Ryan Ard: "Gene regulation by lncRNA transcription- coupled changes in chromatin structure" – University of Copenhagen

Talk by Ryan Ard: "Gene regulation by lncRNA transcription- coupled changes in chromatin structure"

Ryan Ard from the Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh will give a talk on 18 January 2016, 10.00-11.00 at Thorvaldsensvej 40, room H117-3. Everybody is welcome.

Eukaryotic genomes are pervasively transcribed, frequently generating long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) antisense to protein-coding genes, from within introns, or from intergenic regions. While substantial progress has been made in recent years to assign function to individual lncRNAs, most acts of lncRNA transcription fail to produce stable RNA products.

Once dismissed as “transcriptional noise”, a growing body of evidence indicates that cryptic lncRNA transcription actually plays an important role in gene regulation. For example, we recently reported that transcription of a rapidly degraded lncRNA in fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe controls drug tolerance by regulating an adjacent permease-encoding gene.

We found that the mere act of lncRNA transcription over the promoter of this gene increases nucleosome density and prohibits transcription factor binding. Although many related examples of transcriptional interference have been reported in other organisms, including higher eukaryotes, there is limited mechanistic information available.

More recently we have found that gene repression by cryptic lncRNA transcription in S. pombe requires transcription-coupled changes in chromatin status that are also known to prevent the initiation of transcription from cryptic promoters in the body of actively transcribed genes.

Importantly, this mechanism resembles transcriptional interference mechanisms reported in budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Further mechanistic insight such as this is required to determine how widespread gene regulation by lncRNA transcription is across eukaryotic genomes.

Time: 18 January 2016, 10.00-11.00.

Place: Thorvaldsensvej 40, 1871 Frederiksberg C. Room H117-3.