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Revealing chromatin remodelling during brain development

Marshall and Brand use Targeted DamID to show that large-scale chromatin remodelling occurs during Drosophila neural development. Polycomb-mediated repression regulates cell lineage-specific transcription factors that control spatial and temporal gene expression patterns of the developing brain.

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Long noncoding RNA interactions with chromatin revealed

The Brand lab has developed RNA-DamID to detect the interactions between long noncoding RNAs and the genome, providing a tool for investigating the role of these transcripts in specific cell types at different times during development and in disease.

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METTL3 is a new drug target for AML

Searching for new treatments for Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML), Isaia Barbieri and Luca Pandolfini in the Kouzarides lab and colleagues have identified the methyl transferase enzyme METTL3 as a highly viable target. Inhibiting the METTL3 gene destroys AML cells without harming normal blood cells, and this will enable pharmaceutical efforts to find drugs that are specific METTL3 inhibitors, to treat AML.

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New 'tumouroids' model patient-specific liver cancers

Meri Huch's lab and colleagues have pioneered the creation of primary liver cancer organoids, termed tumouroids, from patient biopsies. The tumouroids faithfully model the specific characteristics of the original tumour and provide a platform for screening potential drugs. This breakthrough will offer a route to creating personalised treatments, and can contribute to reducing the number of animals used in drug testing.

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New type of highly potent embryonic stem cell created

The Surani lab have derived a novel cell type, the advanced stem cell (ASC), which is more stable than the naive embryonic stem cell and has the characteristics of the early postimplantation epiblast, expressing both pluripotent and somatic genes.

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Gurdon Institute Seminar 16th January

The next Gurdon Institute Seminar is on Tuesday 16th January at 11.30am, when we welcome Johanna Ivaska (Turku Centre for Biotechnology, University of Turku) to talk on 'Imaging cancer invasion and pluripotency'. In the Biochemistry Lecture Theatre, Sanger Building.

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Meritxell Huch to receive BSCB Early Career Medal

The Women in Cell Biology Early Career Medal for 2018 will be awarded to group leader Meri Huch by the British Society for Cell Biology (BSCB) at a scientific meeting in March 2018. The medal is awarded annually "to an outstanding female cell biologist" who has recently started their independent research career, to inspire the next generation of female scientists.

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Time to re-examine the theory of cancer

A 'revised theory of cancer' was discussed at an international workshop in Austria by high-profile cancer scientists to assess the need for a paradigm shift in cancer research. Organised by the Gurdon Institute's Bernhard Strauss with Mina Bissell (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA, USA) and Ingemar Ernberg (Karolinska Institute, Stockholm), the workshop aimed to formulate a new conceptual framework of cancer theory.

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Studying development to understand disease

The Gurdon Institute is funded by Wellcome and Cancer Research UK to study the biology of development, and how normal growth and maintenance go wrong in cancer and other diseases.

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