*Seminar Series: Brisbane Developmental Biology Seminar Series
*Location: Large Seminar Room, QBP
*Date: 20/09/2017
*Time: 16:00

Speaker #1 details
*Title of talk: Epithelial development and regeneration - insights from mouse genetics and human disease
*Speaker's name: Prof Sarah Millar
*Speaker's organisation: Departments of Dermatology and Cell & Developmental Biology, University of Pennsylvania
Speaker's city/state/country: Philadelphia, USA
Talk Abstract: Delineating the molecular mechanisms underlying development and natural regeneration of the skin and its appendage organs is critical for identifying new therapeutic approaches to diseases that affect these tissues. In previous work, we showed that Wnt/b-catenin signaling is required for initiating the formation of hair follicles, mammary glands and taste papillae from multipotent cells in the embryonic surface ectoderm. Our current studies aim at understanding how Wnt signaling is regulated and patterned in the developing skin. Wnt/b-catenin signaling also plays key roles in regulating the functions of adult epithelial stem cells. In human patients, WNT10A mutations are associated with adolescent onset of a broad range of ectodermal defects, as well as with developmental tooth abnormalities. Using genetic mouse models, we found that b-catenin pathway activity and adult epithelial progenitor proliferation are reduced in the absence of WNT10A, and identified Wnt-active self-renewing stem cells in affected tissues including hair follicles, sebaceous glands, taste buds, and sweat ducts. Unexpectedly, human and mouse WNT10A mutant palmoplantar and tongue epithelia also display specific differentiation defects. We discovered that the dual roles of WNT10A/b-catenin signaling in controlling both proliferation and differentiation are mediated by distinct sets of transcriptional complexes. Our data identified WNT10A as a critical ligand controlling adult epithelial proliferation and region-specific differentiation, and suggest downstream β-catenin pathway activation as a potential approach to ameliorate regenerative defects in WNT10A patients. My lab is also interested in epigenetic mechanisms controlling epithelial development, differentiation, regeneration and tumorigenesis. At the end of my talk, I will briefly describe our current work investigating the mechanisms by which specific histone deacetylase family members control self-renewal and differentiation of skin stem cells, and contribute to skin tumorigenesis.
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Speaker #2 details
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Other Details:
*Host name: Christelle Adolphe
Host phone number:
*Host email: c.adolphe@imb.uq.edu.au