We study the epigenetic processes governing the biology of mouse Embryonic Stem (ES) cells with the broad goals of:
(i) increasing our knowledge on fundamental aspects of gene regulation in mammalian systems.
(ii) obtaining a comprehensive view of the molecular principles underpinning the properties of ES cells (self-renewal and pluripotency).
Providing a new level of knowledge on these aspects should help us understand how epigenetic mechanisms and gene regulatory networks influence cellular-decision making processes.
- How chromatin modifications contribute to cell-to-cell variability and gene expression heterogeneity within the undifferentiated ES cell population.
- How the regulatory continuity between cell generations is controlled and influenced by mitosis, a dramatic event regarding Transcription Factor-mediated control.
- How non-coding RNAs contribute to the activity of the pluripotency network and to the nuclear organisation of the mouse ES cell genome.