Insights on the Regulation of the PERIOD 2 Gene in the Cellular Response to DNA Damage
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Circadian rhythm is a ~24-h mechanism that keeps our physiology and behavior in synchrony with environmental changes. PERIOD2 (PER2) is a core component of the circadian clock and a candidate tumor suppressor as its knockout expression results in a cancer-prone animal. p53 is an effector in the DNA damage response and regulates downstream effectors by trans-activation. Recent studies in our lab show that PER2 can bind to p53, and regulates the trans-activation function. This project studied the subcellular distribution of PER2 in response to DNA damage, and explored the role of p53 in the regulation of PER2 subcellular distribution. We found that PER2 accumulates in the nucleus in response to DNA damage, and such accumulation is independent of p53. In addition, we analyzed Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNP) of PER2 in the 1000 Genome project to gain insight onto how missense mutations in PER2 lay at the interface of p53:PER2 binding. In a separate project, we also performed bioinformatics analysis on the iron related genes to discuss the circadian regulation of iron genes in the liver. These findings shed light on the regulation of PER2 under genotoxic stress, genetic variations of Per2 in normal human population, and expression of circadian genes under iron controlled diets.
- Masters Theses