Epigenetics is the study of inherited changes in phenotype or gene expression caused by mechanisms other than changes in the DNA sequence. This involves histone modifications. My research project focuses on histone modifiers such as MLL5 and EZH2 (of the PRC2 complex). In particular, our research has elucidated the mechanism by which particular tumour-derived point mutations of EZH2 (EZH2Y641) can affect steady state levels of histone H3 Lys-27 trimethylation (H3K27me3) and hence gene expression. This may give us a clue as to how to treat certain kinds of lymphoma.
Studying diseases can be a challenge, since human disease tissue may be scarce and hard to obtain, so scientists often use cell lines and/or animal models. Another line of research seeks to develop relevant disease models from adult disease tissues. As a start, we are looking to see if there are other more efficient ways that adult cells can be reprogrammed to induced pluripotent cells which can then be used a source of cells for development of therapeutics, to test treatments or characterize the disease.
Current Research Projects (2011)
BC Cancer Research Centre
675 West 10th Ave
Vancouver BC, V5Z 1L3, Canada
E: dyap [at] bccrc [dot] ca
P: +1 604 675 8000 x 7558