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Dr Marco Catoni

Dr Marco Catoni

Post Doctoral Researcher

Sainsbury Laboratory
University of Cambridge
47 Bateman Street

Cambridge CB2 1LR
Office Phone: +44(0)1223 761100

Research Interests

Eukaryotic DNA methylation, found at cytosine residues, is an important covalent modification contributing to epigenetic regulation of transcription. In mammals cytosines are methylated prevalently in CG sequence context, while in plants in addition to CG methylation all other cytosines can be methylated. In Arabidopsis, the loss of function of maintenance methyltransferase, MET1, induces genome wide GC de-methylation and transcriptional activation of transposable elements. For certain loci DNA remains de-methylated even after re-introduction of the MET1 gene generating stable epigenetic variants (epialleles). I am studying epigenetic variation and transgenerational epiallele stability in Arabidopsis and in crop plants, in order to reveal molecular mechanisms involved formation and maintenance of contrasting epigenetic states.

I have a molecular biology background and I started my research working on plant-virus interactions, then I studied the epigenetic stability of transgene-induced virus resistance in tomato. I switched my interest to epigenetic regulation in Arabidopsis when I joined the Paszkowski lab.