School of Medicine
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Professor of Genetics and of Pediatrics, Emeritus
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsGenetics of color variation
Professor of Genetics
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur laboratory is focused on identifying proteins based upon their ability to alter a variety of cell fate decisions - including mesodermal, endodermal, neural, endothelial, and somitic - within the vertebrate embryo.
Michele and Timothy Barakett Endowed Professor
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur lab studies the molecular basis of longevity. We are interested in the mechanism of action of known longevity genes, including FOXO and SIRT, in the mammalian nervous system. We are particularly interested in the role of these longevity genes in neural stem cells. We are also discovering novel genes and processes involved in aging using two short-lived model systems, the invertebrate C. elegans and an extremely short-lived vertebrate, the African killifish N. furzeri.
Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Genetics) at the Lucile Salter Packard Children's Hospital and, by courtesy, of Genetics
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy interests include the genetics of autism and other developmental disorders. In collaboration with colleagues at Stanford, I am working to develop induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) models of genetic disorders associated with developmental disability. I am also engaged in the application of new technologies (Whole genome sequencing, Multi-omics profiling) for the diagnosis of developmental disorders.
Assistant Professor of Genetics and of Developmental Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur lab studies how intricate control of gene expression and cell signaling is regulated on a minute-by-minute basis to give rise to the remarkable diversity of cell types and tissue morphology that form the living blueprints of developing organisms. Work in the Barna lab is presently split into two main research efforts. The first is investigating ribosome-mediated control of gene expression genome-wide in space and time during cellular differentiation and organismal development. This research is opening a new field of study in which we apply sophisticated mass spectrometry, computational biology, genomics, and developmental genetics, to characterize a ribosome code to gene expression. Our research has shown that not all of the millions of ribosomes within a cell are the same and that ribosome heterogeneity can diversify how genomes are translated into proteomes. In particular, we seek to address whether fundamental aspects of gene regulation are controlled by ribosomes harboring a unique activity or composition that are tuned to translating specific transcripts by virtue of RNA regulatory elements embedded within their 5’UTRs. The second research effort is centered on employing state-of-the-art live cell imaging to visualize cell signaling and cellular control of organogenesis. This research has led to the realization of a novel means of cell-cell communication dependent on a dense network of actin-based cellular extension within developing organs that interconnect and facilitate the precise transmission of molecular information between cells. We apply and create bioengineering tools to manipulate such cellular interactions and signaling in-vivo.
Assistant Professor of Genetics
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsWe are interested in the mechanism by which bacterial toxins, viruses, and protein aggregates hijack the secretory pathway and kill cells. More broadly, we investigate how diverse stresses (biological, chemical) signal to the apoptotic machinery.
To pursue these interests, we develop widely applicable new technologies to screen and measure genetic interactions; these include high-complexity shRNA libraries, which have allowed the first systematic genetic interaction maps in mammalian cells.
Assistant Professor of Medicine (Hematology) and of Genetics
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe Bhatt lab is exploring how the microbiota is intertwined with states of health and disease. We apply the most modern genetic tools in an effort to deconvolute the mechanism of human diseases.