September 28, 2020

The Niche

Knoepfler lab stem cell blog

H3.3 knockout

4 min read

Sometimes in science there are unexpected threads tying seemingly very different things together. Unraveling the knots in these threads can lead to new insights into important developmental processes and mechanisms of disease. My lab studies epigenomic and transcription factors including a molecule called histone variant H3.3 (more here on H3.3). H3.3 binds to the actual thread of DNA to create very different kinds of chromatin states than those made by the more traditional canonical histone H3 family members. Think of H3.3 as the unorthodox …Read More

3 min read

It has been fascinating in the last year to see the unfolding story of mutations in histone variant H3.3 in pediatric glioblastoma and related tumors. It seems amazing that in just over a year, a whole new area of cancer research has rapidly progressed. As I discussed in a recent post, histone H3.3 is a fascinating molecule that plays critical roles in regulating cellular chromatin and epigenomic states. H3.3 is, as mentioned above, also frequently mutated in some of the worst childhood brain tumors. …Read More

4 min read

A relatively newly recognized, important player in the stem cell field is a molecule called histone variant H3.3. Histones are key components of chromatin with integral roles in regulating almost all aspects of cell behavior through orchestrating functions such as transcription and chromosome segregation. My lab has just (April 9) published new studies on histone H3.3, the first of their kind on the endogenous histone H3.3 protein in mammals. The work was supported by CIRM and NIH. Much of our work was based on …Read More