Simpson lecture to focus on 'Visualizing Protein-DNA Interactions'

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Eric C. Greene, an associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics at Columbia University and an Early Career Scientist at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, will present the 2012/2013 Robert T. Simpson Memorial Lecture in Molecular Medicine at 4 p.m. Feb. 11, in 101 Althouse Laboratory. This free public lecture, titled "Visualizing Protein-DNA Interactions at the Single-molecule Level Using DNA Curtains," will focus on the molecular mechanisms that cells use to repair, maintain and decode their genetic information. The lecture is sponsored by the department of biochemistry and molecular biology.

Greene's laboratory has pioneered novel technologies for studying protein-DNA interactions at the single-molecule level. This work relies on a technique called total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, which Greene and his colleagues use to visualize proteins as they interact with specific sections of the DNA molecule. This technique allows Greene's lab to directly visualize on the order of 100 to 1,000 individual DNA molecules within a single field of view, along with any fluorescently tagged proteins that are bound to the DNA. This technology was developed specifically as a flexible experimental platform adaptable to the study of a wide range of protein nucleic-acid interactions.

After receiving a doctoral degree in biochemistry from Texas A&M University in 1998, Greene conducted postdoctoral research at the National Institutes of Health from 1999 to 2003. Greene became an assistant professor at Columbia University in the department of biochemistry and molecular biophysics in 2004. In 2009, he was appointed as an Early Career Scientist with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and he was promoted to associate professor at Columbia University the following year.

The Robert T. Simpson Lectureship honors Robert T. Simpson and is made possible through donations from his family, friends, colleagues and associates. Simpson was an international leader for more than 35 years in research on chromatin — a fundamental component of chromosomes — and its role in gene regulation. He was at the National Institutes of Health from 1970 until 1995, when he became the Verne M. Willaman Professor of Molecular Biology at Penn State. His addition to Penn State in 1995 is considered to have placed Penn State and the department of biochemistry and molecular biology at the forefront of chromatin research and to have greatly enhanced Penn State's research and educational missions. For more information about the lecture, contact Tamara Housel at 814-865-3072.

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Last Updated January 09, 2015