Dr. Daniel Dominguez, Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology, UNC Chapel Hill
RNA binding proteins (RBPs) modulate all stages of an RNA’s life cycle, including transcription, splicing, localization, translation, and degradation. Accordingly, RBPs control important biological events (e.g. development), and altered RBP function is a prevalent cause of disease. Using large-scale biochemical assays, we explored determinants of RNA specificity for a large cohort of proteins. We established a set of regulatory RNA sequences bound by RBPs and uncovered common features among binding sites. Using this catalog of binding sites along with massive-scale biochemical assays and computational approaches, we explored how protein-RNA interactions are conserved or change across species. Overall, this work aims to define regulatory RNA sequences and to understand how these regulatory sequences may evolve.
Daniel Dominguez is from El Paso, Texas. He graduated from UTEP with a Bachelors in mathematics and biology in 2007. Daniel completed his PhD dissertation on cell division control and RNA processing at UNC Chapel Hill with Zefeng Wang in 2014. He was a postdoctoral fellow at MIT with Chris Burge where he worked on deciphering the specificities of RNA-binding proteins. In 2018, Daniel started as Assistant Professor of Pharmacology at UNC Chapel Hill. His works centers on understanding how proteins interact with RNA to control gene expression and how these interactions are disrupted in disease.