Speakers: Dr Paul Marshall, UQ and Dr Jun YU, SUSTech
Hosted by: Professor Helen Cooper & Professor Shengtao Hou
Date: Friday, October 22, 2021
Time: 12PM (noon) – 1PM Shenzhen // 2PM – 3PM Brisbane
Zoom: https://uqz.zoom.us/j/81499912310


Meet the speakers

Dr Paul Marshall

Postdoc, Bredy Lab Group, Queensland Brain Institute, The University of Queensland

Title: “ Dynamic DNA structure states and memory”

Abstract: DNA forms conformational states beyond the right-handed double helix; however, the functional relevance of these noncanonical structures in the brain remains unknown. Here we show that, in the prefrontal cortex of mice, the formation of one such structure, Z-DNA, is involved in the regulation of extinction memory. Z-DNA is formed during fear learning and reduced during extinction learning, which is mediated, in part, by a direct interaction between Z-DNA and the RNA-editing enzyme Adar1. Adar1 binds to Z-DNA during fear extinction learning, which leads to a reduction in Z-DNA at sites where Adar1 is recruited. Knockdown of Adar1 leads to an inability to modify a previously acquired fear memory and blocks activity-dependent changes in DNA structure and RNA state-effects that are fully rescued by the introduction of full-length Adar1. These findings suggest a new mechanism of learning-induced gene regulation that is dependent on proteins that recognize alternate DNA structure states, which are required for memory flexibility.


Dr Jun YU

Postdoc, Prof. Shengjian Ji’s Lab, SUSTech

Title: “m6A modification regulates local translation in axons to control axon growth”

Abstract: m6A modification is the most abundant internal modification on mRNA. Our previous work showed that m6A modification is dynamically regulated on axonal mRNAs to control local translation and axon growth. However, how the m6A codes in axonal mRNAs are read and decoded by the m6A reader proteins is still unknown. Our recent work identified Dvl1 and Wnt5a mRNA, encoding the key components of Wnt/Planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling pathway, as the targets of the m6A reader proteins YTHDF1 and YTHDF2, respectively. We further found that Dvl1 and Wnt5a mRNAs can be locally translated in axons, which are controlled by YTHDF1 and YTHDF2, respectively. Our study reveals a novel mechanism by which the m6A readers YTHDF1 and YTHDF2 work synergistically on the Wnt5a pathway through regulating local translation in GC axons to control cerebellar parallel fiber development.


About CNNE Seminar Series

The CNNE Seminar Series provides a forum for SUSTech and QBI members to showcase collaboration in key thematic areas and foster new projects.

All are welcome to join this meeting via ZOOM.