Speaker: Eric Folker, assistant professor in Biology Department at Boston College
Title: Moving nuclei to build muscles
Abstract: The nucleus is one of the largest and heaviest cellular organelles and is often depicted as a sphere that houses the genome and sits near the center of the cell. Remarkably, every cell that has a nucleus moves it around the cell dependent on its developmental stage and function. In skeletal muscle, there are many nuclei that undergo long-range movements that precisely position nuclei to maximize the distance between them. This characteristic positioning of nuclei is disrupted in all instances of reduced muscle function whether it be due to disease or aging. We have developed in vivo imaging approaches that have revealed the basic mechanisms that drive nuclear movement during muscle development. Using classical genetics, high-resolution and time-lapse microscopy, and laser ablation of individual nuclei, we found that genes associated with different diseases have unique contributions to nuclear movement. Furthermore, we found that in addition to being spaced far from one another, there are developmental stages during which nuclei are actively held in close proximity, a feature of nuclear function that has not been previously appreciated. In total, our data brings forth nuclear position as a critical contributor to muscle pathologies.
Host: Moe Gupta, GDCB assistant professor
Please join us for refreshments before the seminar outside Room 1414 of the Molecular Biology Building.