Key words: chromatin and gene regulation, complex traits, inflammatory bowel disease, toxicogenomics, computational biology, single-cell genomics
Chromatin and Gene Regulation
Chromosomes are compacted into increasingly complex chromatin structures within eukaryotic nuclei. High-throughput sequence-based assays have been developed to identify regions of nucleosome-depleted open chromatin that mark all types of regulatory elements genome-wide in tissues and cell-types. The computational integration of these data with related gene expression, transcription factor binding, and epigenetic data provide a more complete picture of the complex process of gene transcription and regulation. With these data, we are also investigating the effects of genetic variation on regulation, as can been seen through allelic imbalance in signal from chromatin and transcription factor data, as well as in quantitative trait loci (QTL)-based analyses of these data across individuals.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), primarily consisting of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, is the result of an inappropriate immune response to the intestinal microbiota in a genetically susceptible individual. We have partnered with Dr. Shehzad Sheikh (Dept of Medicine, CGIBD) and Dr. Praveen Sethupathy (Cornell Univ) to uncover molecular determinants of IBD disease phenotypes. In particular, we hypothesize that changes in gene expression profiles mediated by an altered chromatin landscape in key intestinal cell types such as macrophages, in part influenced by the host genetic background, are significantly contributing to aberrant intestinal inflammation. Using both human tissue and mouse models, we seek to identify where chromatin is altered, the impacts on gene expression, and how these are driven by genetic variation in affected individuals.
Exposure to naturally occurring inhalational toxicants can result in serious health challenges. In particular, exposure to high levels of ozone can trigger or exacerbate serious medical conditions such as asthma and COPD. We hypothesize that ozone exposure can alter normal cellular function through changes to the chromatin architecture and transcriptional profiles in tissues contributing to the onset of health complications. In collaboration with Dr. Samir Kelada (Dept of Genetics), we are investigating the molecular effects of ozone exposure in lungs of genetically diverse mice within the Collaborative Cross mouse resource. Better understanding these effects in mice will provide clues as to how ozone is affecting humans.
- Bias 101
- Center for Faculty Excellence Mentoring Workshop
- Culturally Aware Mentoring (CAM) Workshop
- Faculty Mentoring Workshop for Biomedical Researchers
Training Program Affiliations:
- Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
- Satyaki Roy, Postdoctoral Fellow Email
- Meaghan Kennedy, Graduate Student Email
- Nina Nishiyama, Graduate Student Email
- Michelle Hoffner O’Connor (with Shehzad Sheikh), Graduate Student Email
- Ana Berglind (with Shehzad Sheikh), Graduate Student Email
Terry Furey in UNC Genetics News
April 5, 2023
Sheikh and Furey Awarded New R01 from NIDDK
Shezhad Sheikh, MD, PhD (Associate Professor, Medicine and Genetics) and Terry Furey, PhD (Professor, Genetics and Biology) received a new R01 grant from the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive, and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) for their project titled “High throughput functional studies of IBD-associated GWAS variants”.
February 13, 2023
Department of Genetics Publications for January 29th – February 11th, 2023
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 7 papers during January 29th – February 11th, 2023.
November 20, 2022
Department of Genetics Publications for November 6th – 19th, 2022
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 11 papers during November 6th – 19th, 2022.
April 25, 2022
Department of Genetics Publications April 10th – 23rd, 2022
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 18 papers during April 10th – 23rd, 2022.
April 21, 2022
Kelada and Mohlke awarded 5-year R01 from NIEHS
Dr. Samir Kelada (Associate Professor, Genetics) and Dr. Karen Mohlke (Professor, Genetics) were awarded a 5 year R01 from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) titled “Regulatory Genomics of Ozone Air Pollution Response in Vitro and In Vivo”.
February 28, 2022
Department of Genetics Publications February 13th – 26th, 2022
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 11 papers during February 13th – 26th 2022.
November 15, 2021
Department of Genetics Publications October 31st – November 13th 2021
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 12 papers during October 31st – November 13th 2021. A multi-omic single-cell landscape of human gynecologic malignancies. Regner MJ, Wisniewska K, Garcia-Recio S, Thennavan A, Mendez-Giraldez R, Malladi VS, Hawkins G, Parker JS, Perou CM, Bae-Jump VL, Franco HL. Mol Cell. 2021 Nov 1:S1097-2765(21)00842-X. doi: …
August 23, 2021
Department of Genetics Publications August 8th – 21st, 2021
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 18 papers during August 8th – 21st, 2021.
July 12, 2021
Department of Genetics Publications for June 27 – July 10, 2021
Department of Genetics faculty, postdocs, students and collaborators published 17 papers during June 27 - July 10, 2021.
January 4, 2021
Terry Furey, PhD Appointed Professor
Dr. Terry Furey has been appointed Professor in the Departments of Genetics and Biology, effective Jan. 1, 2021.