Thursday, June 6, 2013
Spalding Laboratory 106 (Hartley Memorial Seminar Room)
Chemical Engineering Seminar
Control of gene expression by tuning translation initiation
Cliff Wang, Assistant Professor, Chemical Engineering, Stanford University
Our research program utilizes engineering approaches to dissect the molecular systems involved in cancer, aging and cell differentiation. A longer-term goal is to engineer cells for therapeutic and biotechnology applications. To achieve our goals, we have been developing genetic tools for cell engineering applications. Often times, in order to successfully implement a genetic circuit or produce a desired product, gene expression levels need to be tuned or optimized. While such genetic tools are readily available for E. coli and other prokaryotes, fewer are available for mammalian cells. By engineering small open reading frames and translation initiation sequences, we are able to specify expression over a range up to three orders of magnitude. Using the results of experiments and mathematical models, almost any desired translation level of a gene of interest can be specified.