Defining the response to human PGC induction

Lead Research Organisation: University of Nottingham
Department Name: School of Life Sciences


My project of interest is 'Defining the transcriptional response to human PGC induction' proposed by
Professor Andrew Johnson. I am fascinated by the nature of primordial germ cells (PGCs) and the regulatory
events that establish germ cells from pluripotent precursors. After embryogenesis cells undergo epigenetic
changes and systematically lose multipotency through lineage restriction, all except PGCs which re-establish
totipotency upon formation of the zygote. The transition of pluripotent ESCs to unipotent PGCs is poorly
understood and in vitro PGC induction from ESCs provides an opportunity for studying the epigenetic
mechanisms regulating this unique cellular state. I believe that furthering our knowledge of the regulatory
mechanisms that govern the germ line is paramount to understanding basal mechanisms of development
that gave rise to multicellular organisms.
This project aims to elucidate super-enhancers that regulate PGC fate using ChIA-PET, a gold standard
technique for studying chromatin interactions, which would be an invaluable skill to learn. ChIA-PET has a
similar principle and workflow to other ChIP-based methods in which I have experience and from which I
hope to transition to with ease. My working knowledge of PGC induction along with my experience with
stem cell culture and reporter assays, gained in Professor Johnson's lab, is relevant to the proposed project.
Finally I am familiar with the literature surrounding epigenetic regulation in early development and PGC
specification due to overlap with my Master's project, all of which would allow me to make a strong
contribution to the project.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
MR/N013913/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2025
1940688 Studentship MR/N013913/1 01/10/2017 31/12/2021 Luke Simpson