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Colloquium - Yeo

Uncovering the Splicing Code and Alternative Splicing in Stem Cells
Salk Institute
4/28/2008
12:00pm-1:00pm

Alternative pre-mRNA splicing affects a majority of human genes and plays important roles in development and disease. It has been estimated that at least 50% of human genes undergo alternative splicing (AS). Despite the prevalence of AS, many fundamental questions still lay unanswered. First, which of these events are biologically important? Can we distinguish biologically relevant alternative from constitutively spliced exons in the human genome? What are the salient features that are predictive of AS, and can we identify novel alternative events? Second, what are the functional cis-regulatory elements that regulate constitutive and alternative splicing? How do we systematically identify these elements? Third, very little is known about AS in a developmental context; can we identify events that are differentially spliced during neuronal specification of human embryonic stem cells? What is the splicing factor that regulates these events? What is the function of the factor? In an effort to address these questions, we have integrated and developed computational approaches from machine-learning, genome-wide assays such as CLIP-Seq, novel approaches in Exon Array analysis, and molecular and cellular methods.

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