Associate Professor, Co-Director of the Biology Graduate Program
Department of Biology, Drexel University, Philadelphia, USA
时 间：2018年4月17日 周二上午10:00-11:30
Dr. Elefant’s lab focused on understanding the mechanisms that govern epigenetic regulation of higher order brain function. Epigenetic gene control in the brain is a fundamental mechanism for orchestrating dynamic gene expression profiles critical for cognitive function. One of the best characterized epigenetic marks crucial for learning and memory is histone acetylation that regulates cognitive gene expression by controlling chromatin packaging in neurons. Histone acetylation is regulated by the antagonistic activities of histone acetyltransferases (HATs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs). Impairment of epigenetic gene control mechanisms in the brain involving reduced histone acetylation levels causes significant cognitive deficits that are a debilitating hallmark of most neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Unfortunately, little is known about the select HATs that modify the neural epigenome, and the corresponding gene expression programs they control.
Recently, her lab made the exciting discovery that Tip60 HAT action is critical for cognitive processes via its role in epigenetic neural gene control and remarkably, plays a neuroprotective role under in vivo disease state AD neurodegenerative conditions. They are currently exploring the mechanisms underlying neural Tip60 HAT function in neuroprotective epigenetic gene control and the beneficial impact that environmental enrichment conditions has on these processes. Their studies should provide new understanding into epigenetic based mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disorders, and broad insights into synergistic behavioral and HAT based therapeutic approaches for treatment of cognitive disorders.
Featured as a ‘Key Research Article’ in “Psychology Progress”.
Editorially featured as Issue Highlight.
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