Stem Cell Center of Competence ::: Uni Basel, Switzerland






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Prof. Dr. Mihaela Zavolan
Prof. Dr. Mihaela Zavolan
Computational and Systems Biology
Biozentrum, University of Basel
Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics
Klingelbergstr 50-70
CH - 4056 Basel, Switzerland
Phone +41 61 207 15 77
Fax +41 61 207 15 84

Mihaela Zavolan is a Professor of Computational and Systems Biology at the Biozentrum, University of Basel. Her group studies post-transcriptional mechanisms of gene regulation, combining computational and experimental approaches. A main line of research in the group is miRNA-dependent regulation of mRNA stability and translation. MiRNAs targets are involved in a wide range of processes, and they especially include transcription factors and epigenetic regulators, consistent with the demonstrated roles of miRNAs in developmental processes. By developing methods to predict miRNA targets and by assaying the response of predicted targets to perturbations in miRNA levels, the group aims to uncover miRNA-containing regulatory networks that are important for the establishment of cell identity. Recently, the group has started to investigate how RNA processing, alternative splicing and mRNA translation contribute to the establishment of cell identity. The group maintains many collaborations in Switzerland and abroad. Since 2014 Mihaela Zavolan is a member of the Academia Europea, and since 2015 she is an EMBO member.

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Publications relevant for stem cell biology:

  • Dimitrova Y, Gruber AJ, Mittal N, Ghosh S, Dimitriades B, Mathow D, Grandy WA, Christofori G, Zavolan M. (2017). TFAP2A is a component of the ZEB1/2 network that regulates TGFB1-induced epithelial to mesenchymal transition. Biol Direct. 12:8.
  • Guimaraes JC, Zavolan M. (2016). Patterns of ribosomal protein expression specify normal and malignant human cells. Genome Biol. 17:236.
  • Gruber AJ, Grandy WA, Balwierz PJ, Dimitrova YA, Pachkov M, Ciaudo C, Nimwegen Ev, Zavolan M. (2014). Embryonic stem cell-specific microRNAs contribute to pluripotency by inhibiting regulators of multiple differentiation pathways. Nucleic Acids Res. 42:9313-26.
  • Sinkkonen L, Hugenschmidt T, Berninger P, Gaidatzis D, Mohn F, Artus-Revel CG, Zavolan M, Svoboda P, Filipowicz W. (2008). MicroRNAs control de novo DNA methylation through regulation of transcriptional repressors in mouse embryonic stem cells. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 15:259-67.
  • Landgraf P, Rusu M, Sheridan R, Sewer A, Iovino N, Aravin A, Pfeffer S, Rice A, Kamphorst AO, Landthaler M, Lin C, Socci ND, Hermida L, Fulci V, Chiaretti S, Foà R, Schliwka J, Fuchs U, Novosel A, Müller RU, Schermer B, Bissels U, Inman J, Phan Q, Chien M, Weir DB, Choksi R, De Vita G, Frezzetti D, Trompeter HI, Hornung V, Teng G, Hartmann G, Palkovits M, Di Lauro R, Wernet P, Macino G, Rogler CE, Nagle JW, Ju J, Papavasiliou FN, Benzing T, Lichter P, Tam W, Brownstein MJ, Bosio A, Borkhardt A, Russo JJ, Sander C, Zavolan M, Tuschl T. (2007). A mammalian microRNA expression atlas based on small RNA library sequencing. Cell 129:1401-14.
  • Aravin A, Gaidatzis D, Pfeffer S, Lagos-Quintana M, Landgraf P, Iovino N, Morris P, Brownstein MJ, Kuramochi-Miyagawa S, Nakano T, Chien M, Russo JJ, Ju J, Sheridan R, Sander C, Zavolan M, Tuschl T. (2006). A novel class of small RNAs bind to MILI protein in mouse testes. Nature 442:203-7.

    Reviews related to stem cells:

  • Gruber AJ, Zavolan M. (2013). Modulation of epigenetic regulators and cell fate decisions by miRNAs. Epigenomics 5:671-83.