Department Seminar by Prof. Murat Acar

Systems level analysis of gene network activity for a dosage-compensating network

Prof. Murat Acar, Yale University

Date: Friday, December 18, 2015
Time: 11:00
Place: EA 409

The number of copies of a gene network in a cell, or network dosage, has a direct effect on cellular phenotypes and coping with variations in network dosage is crucial for maintaining optimal function in gene networks. We explored how network structure facilitates network-dosage compensation. By using the canonical galactose utilization network of yeast as a model, we combinatorially deleted one of the two copies of its four regulatory genes and found that network activity was robust to the change in network dosage. Mathematical and computational analyses revealed the necessary and sufficient conditions for setting network-dosage invariance into a gene network, including the need for specific network topologies. The property of networkdosage invariance could represent a general design principle for gene network assembly in cells.

Short bio:

Trained as a physicist (Ph.D., M.I.T.; B.S., Bogazici University), Murat Acar is a systems biologist combining experimental and computational approaches in his research. Murat’s research program aims to understand (a) structure-function relationships in natural gene networks, and (b) how single cells age in real time. Murat started his tenure-track faculty position at Yale as an Assistant Professor in 2012 after a postdoctoral position at CalTech. He currently holds appointments in two departments, Molecular Cellular & Developmental Biology and Physics, in addition to being a member of the Yale Systems Biology Institute.

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