Facultative Heterochromatin Silencing via RNA Decay
Epigenetic state - RNA Fate
We have recently discovered that the LSM2-8 complex mediates a mechanism of RNA degradation that selectively targets H3K27me3-marked genes in C. elegans, revealing that in animals heterochromatin can be silenced by specific degradation of heterochromatic transcripts, and not only by transcriptional repression.
Therefore, we are interested to focus our research on post-transcriptional mechanism(s) involved in heterochromatin silencing in general in higher eukaryotes.
We expect that this research will deepen our understanding of regulation of gene expression in normal animal development and in response to the environment by integrating this novel RNA silencing regulation. In a longer perspective, our goal is to better understand the crosstalk between RNA and chromatin implicated in gene regulation, the initial targeting of the Polycomb H3K27me3 mark to the genome in C. elegans and mammals and ultimately to inflect abnormal gene expression in pathological contexts.