The overarching goal of the Laboratory of Molecular Immunogenetics (LMI) is to understand the genetic and molecular pathways that drive the immune response under normal conditions or disease. The Lymphocyte Nuclear Biology group led by Rafael Casellas specifically studies the key nuclear events underlying immunoglobulin gene recombination, DNA damage, and transcription in B cells. Understanding the molecular pathways driving lymphocyte development and activation is essential for developing targeted therapeutic agents that can ameliorate immune system disorders with minimal side effects. To achieve these goals, we combine a wide range of technologies, including genetics and genomics, CRISPR-Cas9 editing, nanoscopy, Hi-C, cryo-Electron Microscopy, and bioinformatic tools.


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Scientific Publications

Rao SSP, Huang SC, Glenn St Hilaire B, Engreitz JM, Perez EM, Kieffer-Kwon KR, Sanborn AL, Johnstone SE, Bascom GD, Bochkov ID, Huang X, Shamim MS, Shin J, Turner D, Ye Z, Omer AD, Robinson JT, Schlick T, Bernstein BE, Casellas R, Lander ES, Aiden EL.  Cohesin loss eliminates all loop domainsCell. 2017 Oct 5;171(2):305-320.e24. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2017.09.026.

Dekker J, Belmont AS, Guttman M, Leshyk VO, Lis JT, Lomvardas S, Mirny LA, O'Shea CC, Park PJ, Ren B, Politz JCR, Shendure J, Zhong S; 4D Nucleome Network.  The 4D nucleome project. Nature. 2017 Sep 13;549(7671):219-226. doi: 10.1038/nature23884. Erratum in: Nature. 2017 Nov 22;:.

Kieffer-Kwon KR, Nimura K, Rao SSP, Xu J, Jung S, Pekowska A, Dose M, Stevens E, Mathe E, Dong P, Huang SC, Ricci MA, Baranello L, Zheng Y, Tomassoni Ardori F, Resch W, Stavreva D, Nelson S, McAndrew M, Casellas A, Finn E, Gregory C, St Hilaire BG, Johnson SM, Dubois W, Cosma MP, Batchelor E, Levens D, Phair RD, Misteli T, Tessarollo L, Hager G, Lakadamyali M, Liu Z, Floer M, Shroff H, Aiden EL, Casellas R.  Myc regulates chromatin decompaction and nuclear architecture during B cell activationMol Cell. 2017 Aug 17;67(4):566-578.e10. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2017.07.013. Epub 2017 Aug 10.

Canela A, Maman Y, Jung S, Wong N, Callen E, Day A, Kieffer-Kwon KR, Pekowska A, Zhang H, Rao SSP, Huang SC, Mckinnon PJ, Aplan PD, Pommier Y, Aiden EL, Casellas R, Nussenzweig A.  Genome organization drives chromosome fragilityCell. 2017 Jul 27;170(3):507-521.e18. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2017.06.034. Epub 2017 Jul 20. 

Casellas R, Basu U, Yewdell WT, Chaudhuri J, Robbiani DF, Di Noia JM.  Mutations, kataegis and translocations in B cells: understanding AID promiscuous activityNat Rev Immunol. 2016 Mar;16(3):164-76. doi: 10.1038/nri.2016.2. Epub 2016 Feb 22. Review.

Aiden EL, Casellas R.  Somatic Rearrangement in B Cells: It's (Mostly) Nuclear PhysicsCell. 2015 Aug 13;162(4):708-11. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2015.07.034. Review.

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Last Reviewed: 02/17/2017