Faculty Advisor: Aseem Ansari
The factors that are most important for the maintenance of the pluripotency of embryonic stem (ES) cells include the transcription factors OCT4 and DPPA4. I propose to study the global DNA recognition properties of these essential transcription factors on a genome-wide scale. I will map OCT4 and DPPA4 binding by performing ChIP-chip experiments which use chromatin immunopreciptated (ChIP) DNA using an antibody of interest to probe a microarray slide (chip) containing genomic DNA to identify sites of protein occupancy in cells. I intend to apply detailed knowledge of cis-regulatory elements to dissect gene regulatory networks that control stem cell fate and manipulate critical nodes externally with engineered regulators.