Aitchison Lab

Aitchison Lab


Research overview: We focus on the development, application and integration of high-throughput technologies (including affinity purification of macromolecular complexes, transcriptomics, semi-automated high-throughput microscopy, functional genomics and mass spectrometry-based proteomics) with computational biology to gain systems-level insights into macromolecular dynamics. We have use yeast as a tractable model system to develop these systems biology approaches in the context of cell biology, with a focus on nuclear organization and organelle biogenesis (nuclear pore complex structure/function and peroxisome biogenesis and function) and we apply systems level approaches and concepts in the context of infectious disease.


Research interests:

  1. Systems based approaches to reveal and understand complex  biological phenomena focusing on yeast as a model for developing systems biology approaches to infectious disease research. Understanding cellular function from this perspective is essential to developing strategies for intervention when these functions go awry, causing diseases (such as neuropathologies or cancer) or are usurped in the cases of infection by pathogens.
  2. The molecular mechanisms responsible for the biogenesis of peroxisomes – an organelle in the cytoplasm of cells that is responsible for numerous metabolic and signaling functions. Defects in peroxisomal functions have been associated with neuropathologies, diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, cancer and aging.
  3. The development of innovative and dramatically new approaches for the detection, isolation, and analysis of macromolecular complexes that will enable scientists to realize the full potential of the revolution brought about by genomics, interdisciplinary research, and proteomics technologies.
    Videos:

1. Automated IP’s with a Gilson PipetMax liquid handling robot

 

2. One-cell Doubling Evaluation by Living Arrays of Yeast, ODELAY!

Movie SW1.avi: ODELAY records time laps microscopy of 96 strains grown over 48 hours.  Each box is a 3x3mm area of agar imaged in 1/2 hour time intervals. Different strains are observed growing at different rates.

Movie HIS3.avi: Time laps microscopy of a single yeast strain of BY4741 his3∆ demonstrating.  Different colony sizes indicate heterogeneity in a genetically identical yeast strain.


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