Faculty Openings

Dr. Laura Rusche

Associate Professor
Cooke 653
phone: 716-645-5198
fax: 716-645-5198
email: lrusche@buffalo.edu

Further Research Information

Research Summary

       Research in the Rusche lab focuses on chromatin and its impact on gene expression, genome stability, and chromosome function. In particular, we study Sir2 proteins (sirtuins), which deacetylate histones to repress transcription. Because sirtuins require NAD+ for activity, they are proposed to link the processes they regulate with nutrient availability. We are investigating how the functions of yeast sirtuins have shifted over the course of evolution to enable species to develop distinct responses to nutrient stress. For our studies, we employ yeasts as model organisms, taking advantage of the powerful classical genetic and contemporary comparative genomic approaches available in these species.

Selected Publications

  • Froyd, C.A., Kapoor, S., Dietrich, F., and Rusche, L.N. (2013) "The deacetylase Sir2 from the yeast Clavispora lusitaniae lacks the evolutionarily conserved capacity to generate subtelomeric heterochromatin." PLoS Genetics, 9(10):e1003935. PMID: 24204326
  • Froyd, C.A., and Rusche, L.N. (2011) "The duplicated deacetylases Sir2 and Hst1 subfunctionalized by acquiring complementary inactivating mutations." Mol Cell Biol, 31:3351-3365. PMID: 21690292
  • Prescott, J.T., Safi, A., and Rusche, L.N. (2011) "A region of the nucleosome required for multiple types of transcriptional silencing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae." Genetics, 188:535-548. PMID: 21546544
  • Hickman, M.A., Froyd, C.A., and Rusche, L.N. (2011) "Reinventing heterochromatin in budding yeasts: Sir2 and the origin recognition complex take center stage." Euk Cell, 10:1183-1192. PMID: 21764908
  • Hickman, M. A., and Rusche, L.N. (2010) "The transcriptional silencing functions of the yeast protein Orc1/Sir3 subfunctionalized after gene duplication." Proc Natl Acad Sci. 107:19384-19389. PMID: 20974972
  • Lynch, P.J. and Rusche, L.N. (2010) "An auxiliary silencer and a boundary element maintain high levels of silencing proteins at HMR in Saccharomyces cerevisiae." Genetics 185:113-127. PMID: 20176978
  • Rusche, L.N. and Rine, J. (2010) "Switching the mechanism of mating-type switching: a domesticated transposase supplants a domesticated homing endonuclease." Genes Dev 24:10-14. PMID: 20047997
  • Hickman, M.A., and Rusche, L.N. (2009) "The Sir2-Sum1 repressor complex uses promoter-specific and long-range mechanisms to regulate cell identity and sexual cycle in the yeast Kluyveromyces lactis." PLoS Genet 5: e1000710. PMID: 19893609
  • Lynch, P.J. and Rusche, L.N. (2009) "A silencer promotes the assembly of silenced chromatin independently of recruitment." Mol Cell Biol. 29:43-56. PMID: 18955502
  • Rusche, L.N., and Lynch, P.J. (2009) "Assembling heterochromatin in the appropriate places: A boost is needed." J. Cell Physiol. 219:525-528. PMID: 19259946
  • Safi, A., Wallace, K.A., and Rusche, L.N. (2008) Evolution of a new function through a single amino acid change in the yeast repressor Sum1p". Mol Cell Biol. 28:2567-2578. PMID: 18268008
  • Hickman, M.A. and Rusche, L.N. (2007) "Substitution as a mechanism for genetic robustness: The duplicated deacetylases Hst1p and Sir2p in Saccharomyces cerevisiae." PLoS Genet 3:e126. PMID: 17676954
  • Rusche, L.N. and Hickman, M.A. (2007) “Evolution of silencing at the mating-type loci in hemiascomycetes” in Sex in Fungi: molecular determination and evolutionary implications." Heitman, Casselton, and Kronstad editors, ASM.
  • Lynch, P.J., Fraser, B.H., Sevastopoulos, E., Rine, J., and Rusche, L.N. (2005) "Sum1p, the origin recognition complex, and the spreading of a promoter-specific repressor in Saccharomyces cerevisiae." Mol Cell Biol 25:5920-5932. PMID: 15988008
  • Rusche, L.N., Kirchmaier, A.L., and Rine, J. (2003) "The establishment, inheritance, and function of silenced chromatin in Saccharomyces cerevisiae." Ann Rev Biochem 72:481-516. PMID: 12676793
  • Rusche, L.N., Kirchmaier, A.L., and Rine, J. (2002) "Ordered nucleation and spreading of silenced chromatin in Saccharomyces cerevisiae." Mol Biol Cell 13:2207-2222. PMID: 12134062
  • Rusche, L.N., and Rine, J. (2001) "Conversion of a gene-specific repressor to a regional silencer." Genes Dev 15:955-967. PMID: 11316790
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