GCSP research stipend | Spring 2019

Investigating the Role of SP5 in WNT Signaling Using an In-Vitro Model of Neural Patterning

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This project attempts to better understand how the WNT transcriptional program is affected by β-catenin and SP5 by developing an in vitro model of neural patterning. This signaling pathway uses molecules that mediate cell to cell communication, which controls fundamental embryonic processes and regulates the formation of developmental markers. In the absence of WNT, the cytoplasmic β-catenin protein is constantly degraded by a destruction complex, which prevents β-catenin from reaching the nucleus, resulting in the repression of WNT target genes. Ultimately, by better understanding this signaling pathway, the mechanisms underlying WNT-related human defects can be understood better.

Student researcher

Portrait of Sim-Esther

Esther Sim

Biomedical engineering

Hometown: Scottsdale, Arizona

Graduation date: Spring 2020