Chromosome dynamics underlie the transmission of genetic information from generation to generation. From this perspective, we compare and contrast events in E.coli and during mitosis and meiosis in eukaryotic cells including in budding yeast, filamentous fungi and mammalian cells. We are interested in both biological and physical biological issues. Our experiments involve classical approaches (genetics, biochemistry, molecular biology); high-resolution 4D imaging; micromechanical and single molecule manipulation; molecular dynamics simulations; and mathematical analysis.
Current research topics include: E.coli nucleoid dynamics; mammalian mitotic chromosome morphogenesis; physical analysis of meshwork chromatin expansion stress as a driving force for chromosomal changes; recombination-independent pairing of homologous chromosomes in yeast and Neurospora and in vitro; spatial patterning of crossover sites along meiotic chromosomes in yeast and Sordaria; DNA/structure interplay and sister/homolog partner choice during meiotic recombination in yeast and Sordaria; and 4D (spatio-temporal) patterns of chromosome and double-strand break movement during meiosis in yeast.
Integral to this work are close collaborations with the laboratories of Denise Zickler (U. Paris-Sud); Mara Prentiss (Harvard Department of Physics) and John Hutchinson (Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences).