BGU Physics Department
Colloquium, March 15th, 2012
Complex dynamics of transcriptional response: how do cells get on the fast lane ?
Eytan Domani, Weizmann Institute
The talk will start with a very basic introductionaimed at the non-expert.
In response to external stimuli,cells adjust their behavior to a
changing environment – for example, they start to divide or migrate. In
order to perform these actions, the protein content of the cell must
change. To accomplish this, a cell must modify the levels at which the
genes that code for these proteins are transcribed. These
transcriptional responses to extracellular stimuli are regulated by
tuning the rates of transcript production and degradation. I present
here the results of a study aimed at deducing the dynamics of these two
processes from measurements of the transcriptome, and to elucidate the
operational strategy behind this dynamics.
We found that production of many transcripts was characterized by a
large dynamic range, which allowedthese genes to exhibit an
unexpectedly strong transient “production overshoot”, thereby
accelerating their induction. Another intriguing finding indicates that
the degradation rates are controlled in a transcript specific manner,
with interesting dynamics.