Novoa Lab

Novoa Lab

Gene Regulation, Stem Cells and Cancer

Novoa Lab
Epitranscriptomics and RNA Dynamics
Group leader
j

Novoa Lab

Group leader
j

2007 - B.Sc. in Biochemistry, University of Barcelona (UB), Barcelona (Spain)
2009 - M.Sc. in Bioinformatics, University Pompeu Fabra (UPF), Barcelona (Spain)
2012 - Ph.D. in Biomedicine, Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB), Barcelona (Spain)
2013 - EMBO Postdoctoral Fellow, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Boston (USA)
2014 - HSFP Postdoctoral Fellow, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Boston (USA)
2016 - Group Leader/Senior Postdoctoral Fellow at Garvan Institute of Medical Research, Sydney (Australia)
2018 - Group Leader at the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG), Barcelona (Spain)

Summary

A current major challenge in biology is to understand how gene expression is regulated with surgical precision in a tissue-dependent, spatial and temporal dimension. Historically, genome-wide studies of gene expression have typically measured mRNA abundance rather than protein synthesis, in large part because such data are much easier to obtain. However, the correlation between mRNA levels and protein abundance is as low as r=0.35-0.40, suggesting that transcriptional regulation alone is not sufficient to unveil the complex orchestration of gene expression. In the last few decades, the scientific community has started to acknowledge the pivotal role that post-transcriptional regulatory mechanisms play in gene expression, however, we are still far from understanding how gene expression is finely tuned and regulated across tissues and conditions, suggesting that we are missing variables in the equation.

In our lab, we are employing a combination of experimental (RNASeq, polysome profiling, mouse/cell knockouts, Oxford Nanopore direct RNA sequencing) and computational techniques (NGS data analysis, algorithm development, machine learning), to unveil the secrets of three post-transcriptional regulatory layers: the epitranscriptome, RNA structure and ribosome specialization.


(Illustrations adapted from: Novoa et al., Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol 2017; Imanishi et al., Chem Communic 2017; Li et al., Nature Methods 2017; Hauenschild et al., Nucl Acids Res 2015; Stoecklin and Diederichs, EMBO J 2014)