Our lab studies basic cellular processes with the aim of understanding physio-pathological situations such as aging, neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer.
Reactive oxygen species such as hydrogen peroxide exert toxic effects when oxidative stress occurs, but they also have signaling roles: controlled endogenous increases of these species may even improve the overall fitness of the cell and extend the life span.
In normal and healthy cells, the cell cycle is controlled by an overlapping series of signaling pathways controlling cell growth, DNA replication and cell division. This robust control of the cell cycle is missing in a cancer cell.
Our lab uses the eukaryotic model system Schizosaccharomyces pombe to
- study the toxicity associated to oxygen-derived species, specifically protein oxidation and aggregation;
- describe the signaling processes controlled by oxidants;
- characterize the mechanisms that control the G1-to-S transition of the cell cycle;
- study the regulation of splicing during meiosis.