C2: Functional Organization of the Cell Nucleus – 13182
(2 hrs/week; 2 CP; Fall 2022)
Birthe Fahrenkrog, Roderick Lim
This course will describe the structure and function of the eukaryotic nucleus. The nucleus serves as the "brain" of the cell. It contains the genetic information and ensures that it is properly replicated, segregated, transcribed and repaired. Within the nucleus are functional compartments such as the nucleolus, whose function it is to produce ribosomes. The nucleus, which is membrane bound, has nuclear pores, which are complex, regulated machines that control the flow of material into and out of a nucleus. In this course, all features of the nucleus from regulated import/export through pores, to the compartmentalization of transcription, splicing, replication and repair will be covered. We will cover the pathology of nuclear defects, with a focus on mutations in structural components of the nucleus and how they compromise the integrity of the genome to cause tissue-specific disease. The structure and function of lamins and pore proteins intranscriptional control will be presented, as well as the structure and folding of chromosomes and their dynamics through the cell cycle. Subdiffusive movements of chromatin in interphase nuclei and the role of this dynamic behavior in repair and transcription will be discussed. The lectures will give an up-to-date overview of a complex structure-function problem that touches on crucial aspects of cell identity.