Monthly Archives: April 2012

May Chapter Meeting at Novartis

Understanding and Controlling RNA-protein Complexes Involved in Myotonic Dystrophy Type 1

Professor Anne Baranger, PhD
Director of Undergraduate Chemistry,
Faculty Assistant for Teaching and Learning, &
Adjunct Professor of Chemistry

Thursday, May 24, 2012, 6:30-8:30 pm

Myotonic dystrophy is the most prevalent form of muscular dystrophy and its two forms (DM1 and DM2) affect approximately 1 in 8000 people. These diseases cannot be cured, and there are no treatment options that delay disease progression. Both diseases are caused by large expansions of repeated sequences of DNA, which is transcribed into long repeated sequences of RNA. These RNAs are toxic, as a number of cellular proteins associate with them and as a result, these proteins are not available to perform their normal functions. Chief among these proteins is muscleblind-like protein (MBNL).  In healthy cells, MBNL controls the correct expression of proteins that are important for a number of processes including relaxing muscles after contraction and insulin regulation. We have investigated the binding specificity, thermodynamics, and kinetics of the MBNL1 protein for toxic repeat RNA sequences and normal RNA target sites. We have also identified small molecules that will associate with the toxic repeat RNA and release MBNL.                                                                                

Anne Baranger received a B.S. in Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, and was a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University. She joined the Wesleyan University chemistry faculty in 1996, the University of Illinois chemistry faculty in 2006, and the University of California, Berkeley chemistry faculty in 2011. At the University of Illinois, she was Associate Head of the Department, Director of Graduate Studies, and was a Chancellor’s Fellow in the I-STEM Education Initiative. At UC Berkeley, she is Director of Undergraduate Chemistry and a Faculty Assistant for Teaching and Learning.

Thursday, May 24, 2012, 6:30-8:30 pm

Light supper* and networking 6:30pm – 7:00pm

NOTE: Registering w/ Eventbrite will say FREE, however fee will be collected at the door

$5 / members, $10 / non-members

Register at:  http://ebawismaychapter2012.eventbrite.com

Location: Novartis  5400 Hollis St, Building X-310 Emeryville, CA

Park in front of building – Directions here

Non Scientists and Men Welcome