Counterintuitive immunoglobulin gene rearrangements during b cell development
Dr. Amy Kenter, PhD is in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago. Her group studies immunoglobulin gene rearrangements and their regulation during B lymphocyte development. They are interested in understanding how isotype class switching and V(D)J joining are regulated by different aspects of chromatin architecture. The main focus of their studies revolves around two questions: to what extent are the genetic programs for class switch and V(D)J joining flexibly inducible during B lymphoid development and how does chromatin organization interface with these two unique gene rearrangement programs to restrict or facilitate them. The spatial organization of the Igh locus may also provide protection against genome instability induced during Ig gene recombination. Their research relies on combining high-resolution nuclear imaging and quantitative studies of long range chromatin interactions in massively parallel analyses. Ig gene rearrangements are essential for generating diverse humoral immune responses and for understanding mechanisms promoting genome stability in the presence of DNA lesions. Their studies have relevance of understanding how the spatial organization of large genomic loci impact on the functional regulation of gene expression, the development of humoral responses and aberrant events culminating in lymphoid malignancy. If you would like to meet with Prof. Kenter, please contact the host Dr Anne Corcoran directly.