May 28th, Rui Zhang: Evolutionary Analysis Reveals Regulatory and Functional Landscape of RNA Editing

Rui Zhang

Rui Zhang

Rui Zhang is a postdoc in Dr. Jin Billy Li’s lab (2011 – now) in the Department of Genetics, studying the dynamics and evolution of RNA editing. He completed his PhD at Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2009 with Dr. Bing Su, investigating the miRNA-mediated gene regulatory network. Before moving to Stanford, he worked at Beijing Institute of Genomics with Chung-I Wu, studying the miRNA targeting evolution.

Talk: Evolutionary Analysis Reveals Regulatory and Functional Landscape of RNA Editing

Adenosine-to-inosine RNA editing, catalysed by adenosine deaminases acting on RNA (ADAR), promotes functional diversity and is especially prevalent in neural tissues. A plethora of editing sites has been recently identified; however, how they are selected and regulated and which are functionally important are largely unknown. Using the Drosophila genus as a model, we found the establishment of editing and variation in editing levels are largely explained and predicted by cis regulatory element changes. We show that a large fraction of nonsynonymous and 3’UTR editing sites is under evolutionary constraint, highly edited, and thus likely functional. Furthermore, newborn sites are lowly edited and sparsely distributed across genes with diverse functions, while long-lived sites tend to be highly edited in clusters and enriched in slowly-evolved neuronal genes. Our results suggest that RNA editing, rather than nucleotide substitution at the DNA level, may be the preferred evolutionary means of fine-tuning neuronal functions.

Seminar details

Wednesday May 28th, 2014
1:00 PM Lunch In Clark S360
1:15 PM Seminar
Location: Clark S360

One thought on “May 28th, Rui Zhang: Evolutionary Analysis Reveals Regulatory and Functional Landscape of RNA Editing

  1. Pingback: May 28th, Rui Zhang: Evolutionary Analysis Reveals Regulatory and Functional Landscape of RNA Editing | CEHG Evolgenome | Observe.Think.Touch Nature

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