Kaila is a Molecular Medicine PhD student from UMB studying in the Molecular Physiology and Pharmacology Track. Her research is focused on gene regulation at the level of translational regulation under Dr. Rosemary Jagus. More specifically, she studies the family members of the eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) protein family. Her research project is to determine the interacting protein partners of the translational components belonging to the eIF4E family in the dinoflagellate species Amphidinium carterae. Dinoflagellates exhibit little transcriptional regulation making translational regulation of great importance.
mRNA recruitment is known to vary through the diel cycle consistent with the photosynthetic life style and in response to nutrients and stressors and eIF4E family members are known to play a variety of roles in mRNA recruitment. Dinoflagellates encode 8-15 eIF4E family members, with 8 found in A. carterae. Initial characterization of A. carterae eIF4Es was undertaken by a previous graduate student in the Jagus lab who identified eIF4E-1a and -1d as supporting translational initiation. The function of the others are currently unknown. Kaila plans to study A. carterae eIF4E family members by looking at the proteins they interact with and what mRNAs they regulate.
Areas of Expertise
- Translational Regulation
- eIF4E Family Members
- Berea College, BA, Biology Concentrating in Cellular, Molecular and Systems
- University of Cincinnati, AA, Pre-Med/Biology