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image from Nature 1-2023


This publication was for a research project that he was working on at Boston Children’s Hospital before coming to UNC. Quentin was a Research Assistant under Dr. Richard Gregory of Harvard Medical School in the department of pediatric oncology, working in a lab focused on understanding molecular and cellular mechanisms controlling RNA biogenesis and decay, and exploring the relevance of these pathways in stem cell pluripotency, mammalian development, and human disease.
Their work involved the ternary structural analysis of an RNA methyltransferase which is responsible for the 46- N7-methylguanosine (m7G46) modification on the tRNA variable loop. The gene is frequently amplified and overexpressed in cancers and is shown to correlate with poor patient survival, making it a key target for therapeutic research. We have shown that an abundance of m7G-modified tRNA, alters cell cycle, and is directly linked to oncogenicity and tumorigenesis.

Quentin Hahn
Quentin Hahn

Li, J., Wang, L., Hahn, Q. et al. Structural basis of regulated m7G tRNA modification by METTL1–WDR4. Nature 613, 391–397 (2023).

Excellent work Quentin! He will be joining the labs of Qi Zhang and Pengda Liu in the Spring of 2023.