Elizaveta V Benevolenskay

    Email Address: evb@uic.edu
    College: Medicine Department: Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics
    Secondary Department: Bioengineering
    Title: Associate Professor
    Office: MBRB2320 Phone: 312-413-8947
    Webpage: http://www.uic.edu/com/bcmg/faculty/benevolenskaya_elizaveta.html
    Participating in the Chancellor’s Undergraduate Research Awards program: No

    Research Interest:
    My long-term goal is to understand how biological regulatory networks are changed in cancers to develop new treatments and cures for these diseases. My laboratory works on proteins that generate highly specific chemical modifications in the genome, defining the highest level of gene regulation, epigenetics. Some of such enzymes have been associated with human malignancies. However, biological function of epigenetic regulators and in vivo mechanisms targeting them to specific genomic sites in normal and diseased conditions are very poorly defined. We developed several cell culture-based models to study epigenetic regulators responsible for methylation of lysines 4 and 27 in histone H3. We are doing research on their interaction with established tumor suppressors, such as pRB, and trying to identify target genes associated with particular biological function (Lopez-Bigas et al., 2008; Lin et al., 2011; Ambrus et al., 2013; submitted manuscripts). Using knockdown and knockout techniques allows us to reveal relevance of epigenetic regulators to cell growth and put them in biological regulatory networks. My group is publishing extensively on the application of genome location analysis (Beshiri et al., 2010; Islam et al., 2011a and b; Jene-Sanz et al., 2013). The expected low costs for next-generation sequencing-based characterization puts personalized diagnostics in the near future. By visiting my laboratory, students from UIC and other schools get hands-on knowledge of using human genome data. One of the directions of my research is to apply integrative analysis of multidimensional oncogenomic data that will allow us to achieve a better understanding of cancer alterations in epigenetic modules from a global perspective.

    Minimum time commitment in hours per week: 10

    Qualifications of a Student:
    Interest in biology or chemistry, high motivation to do research.

    Brief Summary of what is expected from the student:
    In the initial phase, the student will receive training from one of the researchers in the lab. The student then will be given some tasks in frames of a particular scientific project. Finally, the student will be fully responsible for a small project that contributes to the lab research effort. The methods associated with projects vary but almost every project will include cell culture work and quantitation of gene expression or transcription factor binding by PCR.

    NOTE: This researcher is currently not accepting applications for the Undergraduate Research Experience program.

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