Gene Expression



Cooperative gene expression patterns during fungal morphogenesis.  Dr. Cooper (Biology) and Dr. Yates (Math). 

The pathogenic fungi, Penicillium marneffei and Wangiella (Exophiala) dermatitidis, undergo controlled morphological variation in response to changes in distinct environmental parameters.  These alterations in cell shape involve a series of related genes that encode the enzymes for the synthesis of the same major cell-wall component, chitin.  Such enzymes, designated chitin synthases, are defined as paralogs due to the production of the same product, but individual paralogs are known to have distinct functions in cellular development.  Moreover, many are able to compensate for the loss of function of one another under particular circumstances.  The project to be carried out by the student team is to establish a mathematical model that describes the functional relationship among the various chitin synthases.  Such a model should be able to predict changes in these relationships due to loss of a specific chitin synthase paralog.



MBURDepartment of Mathematics and StatisticsDepartment of Biological SciencesYoungstown State University

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