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Nov 7 2022

11/07 – Jose Villegas, UIC

CBQB Seminar (in-person event)

November 7, 2022

12:00 PM - 1:30 PM


COMRB 8175


909 S Wolcott Ave, Chicago, IL 60612

This is an in-person event in room COMRB 8175 on west campus (directions).  You can also watch seminar live here>>

Jose Villegas, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Pharmaceutical Sciences, UIC

Modeling of Biomolecular Complexes Involved in Gene Regulation and Editing


The dynamic processes of regulating and editing genes require the formation of complex multicomponent biomolecular assemblies. I will discuss the use of computational modeling to gain atomic level insights into two such processes.

The first case is mis-regulation of gene expression in peripheral T-cell lymphomas (PTCL). A subset of PTCLs are characterized by upregulation of the GATA-3 transcription factor. Acetylation of lysine residues at key positions increases GATA-3 transcriptional activity, leading to the over-expression of cancer-associated genes. We have used molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the effects of lysine acetylation on the formation of GATA-3/DNA complexes.

The second case is the selection of repair pathways by CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing complexes. Although CRISPR/Cas9 is a powerful tool for gene editing, a major alternative repair pathway known as nonhomologous DNA end joining (NHEJ) hinders its efficiency. Specifically, an interaction between bacterial Cas9 and the human heterodimeric Ku complex is implicated in selection of NHEJ as the dominant pathway. I will show how we are using AlphaFold Multimer heteromeric docking to identify key residues involved in the formation of interspecies Cas9/Ku protein complexes.



UIC Biomedical Engineering

Date posted

Oct 28, 2022

Date updated

Oct 28, 2022