Alessandro Bertero, PhD
Armenise-Harvard Lab of Heart Engineering and Developmental Genomics
Molecular Biotechnology Center • University of Turin
Department of Molecular Biotechnology and Health Sciences
Torino - ITALYShort CVAbstract
Recent technological advancements in the field of chromatin biology have rewritten the textbook on nuclear organization. We now appreciate that the folding of chromatin in the three-dimensional space (i.e. its 3D “architecture”) is non-random, hierarchical, and highly complex. Nevertheless, functional changes in spatial genome organization during human development or disease remain poorly understood. We have investigated these dynamics in two models: (1) the differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CM); (2) hPSC-CM from patients with cardiac dilated cardiomyopathy. We combined omics methods to probe nuclear structure (Hi-C), chromatin accessibility (ATAC-seq), and gene expression (RNA-seq), genetic perturbations by CRISPR/Cas9, and cardiac physiology assays. In this seminar I will summarize our published findings and present novel preliminary data that indicate the dynamic nature of genome organization during human development and disease, and show how these spatial relationships can regulate lineage-specific gene expression. Finally, I will describe the methods we are developing to probe the structure-function relationship of chromatin.