PI: Amanda Larracuente
Graduate Students: Emerson Khost, Ching-Ho Chang, Xiaolu Wei
Research associates and technicians: Danna Eickbush, Zeenath Unnisa, Shaun Jones
Undergraduates: Arif Kodza, Linhe Xu (Alex), Thanatcha Khunkhet (Kwan), Danielle Pascua, Isaac Wong, Taylar Mouton
Former lab members
Amanda earned her Ph.D. studying Drosophila genomics and sex chromosome evolution in Dr. Andrew Clark’s lab at Cornell University. During her postdoctoral training, she focused on the evolution of selfish DNA including the Segregation Distorter system of Drosophila melanogaster.
- Larracuente, A.M. 2014. The organization and evolution of the Responder satellite in species of the Drosophila melanogaster group: dynamic evolution of a target of meiotic drive. BMC Evol. Biol.14:233. doi:10.1186/s12862-014-0233-9
- Larracuente, A.M. and A.G. Clark. 2014. Recent selection on the Y-to-dot translocation in Drosophila pseudoobscura. Mol. Biol. Evol. 31(4):846-856. doi 10.1093/molbev/msu002.
- Larracuente, A.M. and A.G. Clark. 2013. Surprising differences in the variability of Y chromosomes in African and Cosmopolitan populations of Drosophila melanogaster. Genetics. 193:201-214.
- Larracuente, A.M. and D.C. Presgraves. 2012. The selfish Segregation Distorter gene complex of Drosophila melanogaster. Genetics. 192: 1-21.
Emerson is an E2G2 student working on the evolution and functional genomics of satellite DNA in Drosophila species. He is using deep real time single molecule sequencing from Pacific Biosciences to study the structural organization of satellite DNA loci in Drosophila genomes. Learn more about Emerson in his “Spotlight” article.
- Khost, D.E., D. Eickbush, A.M. Larracuente. 2017. Single molecule long read sequencing resolves the detailed structure of complex satellite DNA loci in Drosophila melanogaster. Genome Research . Advanced Access. 4/3/17. http://www.genome.org/cgi/doi/10.1101/gr.213512.116.
Ching-Ho is an E2G2 student working on Segregation Distorter in Drosophila melanogaster and Y chromosome evolution in Drosophila. Before coming to Rochester, Ching-Ho worked with Dr. Chau-Ti Ting at National Taiwan University on neo-sex chromosome evolution in Drosophila albomicans. Ching-Ho is a recipient of the Ernst Caspari Fellowship.
- Chang, C-H. and A.M. Larracuente. 2017. Structural changes following the reversal of a Y chromosome to an autosome in Drosophila pseudoobscura. Evolution. Advanced Access 3/21/17. http://dx.doi.org/ .
- Chang C-c, Ting C-T, Chang C-H, Fang S, Chang H-y (2014) The Persistence of Facultative Parthenogenesis in Drosophila albomicans. PLoS ONE 9(11): e113275. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0113275
- Chia-Hao Cheng, Ching-Ho Chang, and Hwei-yu Chang (2011) Early-stage evolution of the neo-Y chromosome in Drosophila albomicans. Zoological Studies 50(3): 338-349.
Xiaolu is a Biomedical Genetics student studying how satellite DNA is regulated in the germline using functional genomics and cytogenetics.
Danna Eickbush, Ph.D. (Research associate)
Danna Eickbush attended the University of Arizona where she was introduced to the wonders of molecular biology and immediately transferred to the newly formed Department of Cellular and Development Biology. She then joined the Ph.D. program in Cellular and Development Biology at Harvard University, characterizing the molecular structure and transcriptional patterns of the 71C-E region of Drosophila melanogaster while in the lab of Dr. Peter Cherbas. After moving to upstate New York, she did a postdoc with Dr. Jack Werren studying the selfish B-chromosome Paternal Sex Ratio (PSR) in the wasp Nasonia vitripennis. For the last 25 years, she has worked as a research associate with Dr. Tom Eickbush at the University of Rochester. The long tenure with her husband allowed Danna to study many aspects of the life cycle of the retrotransposable element R2, including its regulation and transcription. Danna works on the regulation of satellite DNA expression in Drosophila species.
Selected recent publications. Click here to see Danna’s PubMed list.
- Eickbush, T.H. and Eickbush, D.G. 2015. Integration, regulation, and long-term stability of R2 retrotransposons. In Mobile DNA III. ASMscience. Editor Nancy L. Craig (in Press).
- Eickbush, D.G., Burke, W.D. and Eickbush, T.H. 2013. Evolution of the R2 retrotransposon ribozyme and its self-cleavage site. PLoS One 8: e66441.
- Eickbush, D.G. and Eickbush, T.H. 2012. R2 and R2/R1 hybrid non-autonomous retrotransposons derived by internal deletions of full-length elements. Mobile DNA 3: 10.
Zeenath Unnisa, Ph.D. (Technician)
Zeenath is a molecular biologist studying molecular mechanisms of meiotic drive in the Segregation Distorter system of D. melanogaster. Before joining the Larracuente lab, Zeenath studied hematopoietic stem cells in mice.
Selected publications from previous work:
- Unnisa Z, Singh KP, Henry EC, Donegan CL, Bennett JA, Gasiewicz TA. 2016. Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Deficiency in an Exon 3 Deletion Mouse Model Promotes Hematopoietic Stem Cell Proliferation and Impacts Endosteal Niche Cells.Stem Cells Int. 2016:4536187. doi:10.1155/2016/4536187.
- Meis1 preserves hematopoietic stem cells in mice by limiting oxidative stress. 2012. Unnisa Z, Clark JP, Roychoudhury J, Thomas E, Tessarollo L, Copeland NG, Jenkins NA, Grimes HL, Kumar AR. Blood. Dec 13;120(25):4973-81. doi: 10.1182/blood-2012-06-435800.
Shaun is a skilled fly wrangler who maintains the lab’s fly lines and helps the lab with various projects.
Danielle is an undergraduate technician using genetics to study Segregation Distorter.
Isaac is using computational and cytogenetic methods to study repeat evolution in fireflies.
Kwan is studying the functional genomics of satellite DNA.
Alex is working on the regulation of satellite DNA expression in Drosophila melanogaster.
Arif is studying the population genetics of satellite DNAs in Drosophila genomes.
Taylar is studying the function of multi-copy Y-linked gene families in D. melanogaster and the simulans clade species.
Former lab members
Undergraduates: Christian Silva (current grad student UC Davis), Thanatcha (Kwan) Khunkhet, Linhe (Alex) Xu (grad student at Vanderbilt starting fall 2017)
Graduate students: Steven Messer (rotating grad student), John Bettinger (rotating grad student), Xiaolu Wei (rotating grad student)