Tag: Young Lab

Aggressive cancer exploits MYC oncogene to amplify global gene activity

September 27, 2012

Whitehead Institute researchers have determined the mechanism used by c-Myc to increase the expression of all active genes in cancer cells. Elevated levels of c-Myc are linked to increased rates of metastasis, disease recurrence, and mortality in cancer patients. Guided by this new model, researchers hope to find ways to restrict c-Myc's activity to eradicate cancer cells that become dependent on c-Myc for their survival.

Whitehead Member Richard Young elected to National Academy of Sciences

May 1, 2012

The National Academy of Sciences announced today that Whitehead Institute’s Richard Young is among 84 new Academy members elected in recognition of distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

Images of cells with LSD1 activity on and off

Chaos in the cell's command center

February 1, 2012

Whitehead Institute researchers have determined the critical role one enzyme, lysine-specific demethylase 1 (LSD1), plays as mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) differentiate.

How major signaling pathways are wired to our genome gives new insight into disease processes

October 27, 2011

Whitehead Institute scientists have determined that master transcription factors determine the genes regulated by key signaling pathways. In this way, signaling pathways are targeted to genes that are most relevant to each cell type and tailor gene expression to control cell state, growth, differentiation, and death.

Graphic of gene expression machinery and the protein complexes Mediator and Cohesin forming a DNA loop

Surprise in genome structure linked to developmental diseases

August 18, 2010

The genes that are responsible for maintaining each cell type form DNA loops that link control elements for these genes. This surprising genome structure is generated and reinforced by two essential protein complexes that bridge the loops and contribute to proper gene regulation.

Human embryonic stem cells and reprogrammed cells virtually identical

August 5, 2010

Human embryonic stem (ES) cells and adult cells reprogrammed to an embryonic stem cell-like state—so-called induced pluripotent stem or iPS cells—exhibit very few differences in their gene expression signatures and are nearly indistinguishable in their chromatin state, according to Whitehead Institute researchers.

Embryonic stem cells reveal oncogene’s secret growth formula

April 29, 2010

Whitehead Institute researchers have identified the mechanism that the protein c-Myc uses to regulate gene transcription, which affects one-third of the expressed genes in the genome. The work also reveals a general role for this mechanism in gene control, which is called transcriptional pause release.

Tracking the molecular pathway to mixed-lineage leukemia

December 15, 2008

The MLL-AF4 fusion protein, which causes the blood cancer called mixed-lineage leukemia (MLL), binds to several genes responsible for early blood cell development. MLL-AF4 also alters the chromatin proteins associated with these genes, a state that is associated with cancer and leukemia progression.

Putting microRNAs on the stem cell map

August 7, 2008

Short snippets of RNA called microRNAs help to keep embryonic stem cells in their stem cell state. Researchers now have discovered the gene circuitry that controls microRNAs in embryonic stem cells.

Whitehead postdoctoral researchers Stuart Levine and Matthew Guenther

Cells take risks with their identities

July 12, 2007

Contrary to textbook models, many genes that should be “off” in embryonic stem cells and specialized adult cells remain primed to produce master regulatory proteins, leaving those cells vulnerable to identity changes.

Schematic of identifying Foxp3 interacts with the genome

Cracking open the black box of autoimmune disease

January 21, 2007

Researchers have identified a key set of genes that lie at the core of autoimmune disease.

Whitehead researchers named among Scientific American’s top 50

November 6, 2006

Whitehead Members Susan Lindquist and Richard Young, along with postdoctoral scientist Laurie Boyer, have been named in Scientific American magazine’s annual list of the world’s 50 top leaders in research, business or policy.

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