CSC News

December 22, 2009

Heber Receives Award to Study Alternative Splicing in Genes

Dr. Steffen Heber, assistant professor of computer science at NC State University, has been awarded $299,420 by the National Science Foundation to support his research proposal titled “Role of Alternative Splicing in Arabidopsis Immune Response.”

The award will run from December 1, 2009 to November 30, 2011.

Heber will collaborate with Dr. Paola Veronese, assistant professor of plant pathology at NC State University.
Abstract - Alternative splicing (AS) is an important mechanism of gene regulation that contributes to transcriptome and proteome diversity. The role of AS in specific biological processes is largely uninvestigated.  Our goal is to measure the extent and functional significance of AS in Arabidopsis thaliana defense against the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (Pst).  Specific objectives include 1) discover Pst-induced AS via long-read mRNA-Seq,  2) characterize genome-wide AS and gene expression patterns associated with Arabidopsis-Pst interactions via short-read mRNA-Seq, and  3 ) determine the impact of AS on protein structure, validate selected AS isoforms and perform functional analysis of selected AS genes.

For more information on Dr. Heber, click here.


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