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Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series (WALS) - Cell and genome organization in mitosis, development, and homeostasis

June 20, 2018

3:00pm - 4:00pm

Building 10, Clinical Center, Masur Auditorium

The NIH Director's Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series, colloquially known as WALS, is the highest-profile lecture program at the NIH. Lectures occur on most Wednesdays from September through June from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Building 10 on the NIH Bethesda campus.

Each season includes some of the biggest names in biomedical and behavioral research. The goal of the WALS is to keep NIH researchers abreast of the latest and most important research in the United States and beyond. An added treat is the annual J. Edward Rall Cultural Lecture, which features top authors and other cultural icons. All speakers are nominated by the NIH community.

The full WALS lecture season agenda is available at https://oir.nih.gov/wals.

Speaker:

Yixian Zheng, Ph.D.
Investigator
Carnegie Institution for Science

Lecture summary:
I began my research career studying how microtubules regulate various cellular processes, especially microtubule assembly, mitotic spindle assembly, and chromosome segregation. As a PhD student in Dr. Berl Oakley’s lab, my study of g-tubulin has inspired me to use biochemical approaches to investigate the mechanism of microtubule nucleation as a postdoctoral fellow in Drs. Bruce Alberts and Tim Mitchison’s labs at UCSF. This has led to the discovery of the g-tubulin ring complex (gTuRC) and the demonstration of its microtubule-nucleating activity from purified tubulins. After establishing my lab, we discovered the role of RanGTPase in regulating spindle assembly in mitosis. Our more recent study of the mitotic spindle matrix has led to the finding that the nuclear lamin-B is part of the spindle matrix. We show that lamin-B plays a role in mitotic spindle morphogenesis and spindle orientation. In recent years, our research has expanded into studying the role of lamins in the interphase nucleus. By analyzing lamin deletions in mice, mouse ES cells, and various Drosophila stem cells, we have shown that lamins play important roles in organogenesis during development. Additionally, we show that lamin-B prevents immunosenescence and system inflammation upon organismal aging by maintaining the heterochromatin in immune organs. 

This lecture will be followed by a reception in the NIH Library. Special thanks to the Foundation for Advanced Education in the Sciences (FAES) for its support of the weekly reception. FAES is proud to co-sponsor with the NIH in hosting the Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series.

To watch the lecture online, visit http://videocast.nih.gov. Registration is not required; seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Fire regulations require that every person in Masur Auditorium must have a seat. Standing in the aisles or in the back of the auditorium is not permitted. Sign language interpreters can be provided. Individuals with disabilities who need reasonable accommodation to participate in this event should contact Jacqueline Roberts, Jacqueline.Roberts@nih.gov, 301-594-6747, or the Federal Relay, 800-877-8339.