About the Project
My group is interested in one particular post-translational modification, lysine methylation, and the enzymes that catalyse this. These ‘lysine methyltransferases’ play vital roles in maintaining human health and development, and in preventing tumourigenesis. Our main focus in the Higgs lab is on how these enzymes control the DDR and therefore prevent genome instability.
This PhD will investigate how the KMT2 family of Lys methyltransferases function in the DDR. The project will involve a wide variety of laboratory techniques, including mass spectrometry, co-immunoprecipitation, RNAi techniques, in vitro activity and binding assays, fluorescent and visual microscopy, immunoblotting and immunofluorescence, molecular cloning, cell culture and CRISPR-based mutagenesis. These approaches will lead to a greater understanding of how lysine methylation is involved in maintaining genome stability and preventing human disease.
For further information, please contact [email protected].
Applicants should have a strong background in molecular and cellular biology, with experience of one or more of the following laboratory techniques: mammalian tissue culture; immunofluorescence; immunoblotting or molecular cloning. Previous experience of a research lab environment is essential. They should be ambitious, enthusiastic and self-motivated, and hold at least an Upper Second Class Honours Degree in a relevant biological subject. If applicable, they should also be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language.
Characterization of SETD1A haploinsufficiency in humans and Drosophila defines a novel neurodevelopmental syndrome. Kummeling et al. Mol Psych 2020: in press.
BOD1L is required to suppress deleterious resection of stressed replication forks. Higgs MR et al., 2015, Mol Cell: 59; 462-77.
Hijacked in cancer: the KMT2 (MLL) family of methyltransferases. Rao and Dou, 2015, Nature Reviews Cancer: 15; 334-346.
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