Dr. Hyejung Won (Assistant Professor, Department of Genetics) has been awarded a one-year pilot grant from NC TraCS for her project titled “Chromosomal Disorganization in Down Syndrome”.
A multidisciplinary team of UNC researchers, including Drs. Zheng Fan (Neurology), Stephen Hooper (Psychiatry), Neeta Vora (Obstetrics and Gynecology) and Adriana Beltran (Genetics), will focus on understanding the pathogenic mechanism of the disease. Aim 1 will involve the generation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) and their differentiated neural progenitor cells (NPCs) from individuals with DS and sex-matched neurotypical sibling controls. Aim 2 will focus on integrated analysis of transcriptome and chromatin structure in Down Syndrome compared to controls. The study should provide pilot data to lay the foundation for genotype-phenotype linkages in Down Syndrome and inform possible avenues for treatment.