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Biology Department seminars, unless otherwise noted, are on Mondays at 4:00 p.m. in Merrill 4.
Adam J. Bass '97, M.D.
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Cellular and Molecular Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School. "Learning from the Genome to Improve Cancer Therapy"
Research Summary: "In our laboratory, we bring together expertise in modern genomics, experimental/functional biology and clinical medicine. Our overarching goal is to leverage the study the cancer genome to elucidate key biological processes and therapeutic vulnerabilities in carcinomas arising in the GI tract (especially stomach, esophageal carcinomas)."
Research Summary: "During mitosis and meiosis, chromosomes are partitioned equally into daughter cells by first aligning in the center of the spindle and then being pulled toward opposite poles. This process is normally monitored by a surveillance system known as the Spindle Assembly Checkpoint (SAC) that delays the cell cycle until all chromosomes have made productive attachments to microtubules. Macromolecular complexes called kinetochores play the duel roles of orchestrating this complex chromosome choreography and generating the signals that halt cell cycle progression. Although the identity of kinetochore components has now been well established, we have just begun to understand the assembly process and spatial arrangement of these dynamic machines. Applying 3-D super-resolution imaging to Xenopus egg extracts, we reveal that the kinetochore is spatially and functionally segmented into a static core module supporting stable microtubule attachments and an expandable module responsible for initial, transient attachments and SAC signaling. Our data challenge conventional models of kinetochore assembly and suggest new mechanisms by which kinetochore functions can be coordinated in space and time."
25 February 2015 2014 TLR