Since several diseases are the result of genomic instability, it is crucial for an organism to keep the number and integrity of chromosomes intact. Many tumors are characterized by DNA rearrangements and changes in gene copy numbers. The causes of genome instability are not always known, but in part it is due to an interplay between genetic mutations and factors to which cells are exposed to, including particular drugs.
Several genes in baker’s yeast which protect cells from drug-induced genome alterations have been identified. Some of these genes are also present in humans. This bridged PhD project will study the properties of the proteins encoded by these genes in yeast and human, n order to understand their role in preventing genome alterations and how drugs may interfere with this process. Expression of these genes in humans is examined in normal and cancer cells, in the presence and absence of various drugs used in the clinic with the aim to examine their potential use as translational biomarkers for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes.
The project bridges the research groups:
- Molecular Toxicology