School of Humanities and Sciences
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Current Research and Scholarly InterestsArabic Language, Literature, Music. Comparative Literature. Radio Broadcasting
Basic Life Science Research Associate, Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsProtein misfolding in the cell creates toxic species linked to an array of diseases. Protective cellular protein quality control (PQC) mechanisms evolved to selectively recognize misfolded proteins and limit their toxic effects. Molecular chaperones recognize misfolded proteins, while the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) promotes their clearance through the attachment of ubiquitin chains. We previously identified a PQC pathway for spatial sequestration and clearance of misfolded proteins, conserved from yeast to humans, that is amplified when the UPS is impaired. However, the identity of the E3 ubiquitin ligases involved in this pathway—and how they interact with the chaperone machinery—is unresolved. Starting with a fluorescence microscopy-based genetic screen in yeast, we show that distinct chaperone and ubiquitination circuitries cooperate in PQC of soluble misfolded proteins in the cytoplasm and nucleus. In contrast with the canonical model where Lys48-linked ubiquitin chains are sufficient for proteasomal targeting, we found that cytoplasmic misfolded proteins requires tagging with mixed ubiquitin chains that contain both Lys11 and Lys48 linkages to be degraded. Each type of linkage-specific ubiquitination requires a distinct combination of ubiquitin ligases and chaperones. Strikingly, unlike cytoplasmic PQC, proteasomal degradation of nuclear misfolded proteins only requires Lys48 ubiquitin linkages and is independent of Lys11-specific circuits. We conclude that cytoplasmic and nuclear PQC involve combinatorial recognition by defined sets of cooperating systems. The distinct PQC requirements reveal underlying differences in nuclear and cytoplasmic proteome management, with important implications for our understanding of a wide range of diseases.
Professor Harold C. Schmidt Director in Choral Studies and Professor (Teaching) of Music
BioStephen M. Sano, Professor at Stanford University’s Department of Music, assumed the position of Director of Choral Studies in 1993. At Stanford, Dr. Sano directs the Stanford Chamber Chorale and Symphonic Chorus, where he has been described in the press as “a gifted conductor,” and his work as “Wonderful music making! ... evident in an intense engagement with his charges: the musicians responded to this attention with wide-eyed musical acuity.” Other reviews have lauded, “It is difficult to believe that any choral group anywhere is capable of performing better than the Stanford chorus under the direction of Stephen M. Sano.”
Dr. Sano has appeared as guest conductor with many of the world’s leading choral organizations, including in collaborative concerts with the Choirs of Trinity College and St John’s College, Cambridge; the Joyful Company of Singers (London); the Choir of Royal Holloway, University of London; the Kammerchor der Universität der Künste Berlin; and the Kammerchor der Universität Wien (Vienna). He often appears as guest conductor of the Peninsula Symphony Orchestra in its collaborative concerts with the Stanford Symphonic Chorus, and has served on the conducting faculty of the Wilkes University Encore Music Festival of Pennsylvania. He has studied at the Tanglewood Music Center and is in frequent demand as a master class teacher, conductor, and adjudicator in choral music. To date, he has taught master classes and conducted festival, honor, municipal, and collegiate choirs from over twenty states, as well as from England, Austria, Germany, Canada, Australia, and Japan.
On Stanford’s campus, Dr. Sano’s accomplishments as a leader and educator have been recognized through his appointments as the inaugural chair holder of the Professor Harold C. Schmidt Directorship of Choral Studies and as the Rachford and Carlota A. Harris University Fellow in Undergraduate Education at Stanford University. He was also the recipient of the 2005 Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching. Dr. Sano's recordings with the Stanford Chamber Chorale have twice appeared on the Grammy Awards preliminary ballot in the category "Best Choral Album." His choral recordings can be heard on the ARSIS Audio, Pictoria, and Daniel Ho Creations labels.
Outside of the choral world, Dr. Sano is a scholar and performer of kī hō‘alu (Hawaiian slack key guitar), and an avid supporter of North American taiko (Japanese American drumming). As a slack key artist, his recordings have been nominated as finalists for the prestigious Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award and the Hawaiian Music Award. His recording, "Songs from the Taro Patch," was on the preliminary ballot for the 2008 Grammy Award. Dr. Sano’s slack key recordings can be heard on the Daniel Ho Creations and Ward Records labels.
A native of Palo Alto, California, Dr. Sano holds Master’s and Doctoral degrees in both orchestral and choral conducting from Stanford, and a Bachelor’s degree in piano performance and theory from San José State University. He has studied at Tanglewood Music Center and with Mitchell Sardou Klein, William Ramsey, Aiko Onishi, Alfred Kanwischer, Fernando Valenti, and Ozzie Kotani.
Associate Professor of Sociology
BioProfessor Saperstein received her B.A. in Sociology from the University of Washington and her Ph.D. in Sociology and Demography from the University of California-Berkeley. In 2016, she received the Early Achievement Award from the Population Association of America. She has also been a Visiting Scholar at the Russell Sage Foundation.
Her research focuses on the social processes through which people come to perceive, name, and deploy seemingly immutable categorical differences —such as race and sex—and their consequences for explaining, and reinforcing, social inequality. Her current research projects explore several strands of this subject, including:
1) The implications of methodological decisions, especially the measurement of race/ethnicity and sex/gender in surveys, for studies of stratification and health disparities.
2) The relationship between individual-level racial fluidity and the maintenance of group boundaries, racial stereotypes, and hierarchies.
This research has been published for social science audiences in the American Journal of Sociology, the Annual Review of Sociology, Demography, and Gender & Society, among other venues, and for general science audiences in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and PLoS One. It also has been recognized with multiple article awards, and gained attention from national media outlets, including NPR and The Colbert Report.