Boston Chromatin Club Blog

Chromatin Club 7

I'm very happy with how the Chromatin Club is growing. We're up to a rotating cast of ~20 people from a variety of labs in Boston. This month we went to Russell House Tavern and had some oysters, steak tips and salmon. Our discussion mostly centered around phase separation this time. This is still a rather contentious topic. On one side, you have a lot of excitment for all the cool phase separation experiments that are being published in high impact journals and on the other side you have the wet blankets (myself included) who complain that i) there is no functionality ascribed to...

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Chromatin Club 6

Another great meeting with a few new faces! This week we had Jan-Hendrik Spille from Ibrahim Cisse's lab. Jan is going to be starting his own lab next year at University of Illinois at Chicago - good luck Jan! Aditi Chakrabarti also joined us from the Mahadevan lab. Aditi heard me talk about image processing during a HCBI talk where I also shamelessly advetrised the Chromatin Club. Aditi has a tonne of interests and we had a nice chat about the nuclear mechanics. This month we also had a Sirui Liu who joined the Ovchinnikov and my lab recently as a jointly advised...

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Chromatin Club V

After a summer break I started our chromatin club again. This time we were joined by Dushan Wadduwage (Center for Advanced Imaging), Assaf Amitai (Chakraborty lab), Kristin Koenig (JHDSF), Haitham Shaban (Seeber lab), Jun-Han Su (Zhuang lab), Lingluo Chu (Kleckner lab) and Nuno Martins (Wu lab). Nuno found our club after attending a talk I gave for the Harvard Center for Biological Imaging about building image analysis pipelines with Ilastik and KNIME (link here). It seems that there is a definite...

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Chromatin Club IV

This month's Chromatin Club was attended by the usual suspects. We went to Border Cafe with it's unlimited free corn chips and giant glasses of water. Dushan and I are putting together our thoughts for an NIH R21 grant and it was a great opportunity to discuss our ideas with the other members. Sergey is in the process of hiring a new post doc who has a background in chromatin. He's very interested in looking at the evolution of multicellularity and we believe that chromatin may have played an important role. Overall this was a relaxed meeting with some nice discussions and tasty food....

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Chromatin Club III

Back to the Russell House Tavern and it's charming underground dining area. This month Akwasi, Tadasu, Assaf, Andrew were joined by Sergey Ovchinnikov, another John Harvard Distinguished Science Fellow. Sergey's laboratory is interested in developing an improved and unified statistical model of protein evolution. He works with metagenomic data collected from soil and water samples around the world to mine DNA sequences to discover new protein families, functions, and protein-protein interactions. Sergey is also very interseted in probing the evolution of multicellularity which became a... Read more about Chromatin Club III

Chromatin and Sandwiches II

For this meeting we had lunch at the Hourly Oyster House next to new Smith Campus Building. Joining us from MIT was Assaf Amitai from the labs of Arup Chakraborty and Mehran Kardar. Assaf's background is applied math, modeling, simulations and statistical physics and I've previously worked with him to model chromatin as a polymer. Dushan Wadduwage also joined us today. He is my colleague and fellow, fellow from the Center for Advanced Imaging. Dushan is currently working on a number of computational imaging projects including deep learning methods to denoise images. This made for an...

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Boston Chromatin Club I

The first meeting of the Boston Chromatin Club. This meeting was attended by Tadasu Nozaki (Kleckner lab), Akwasi Agbleke (Kleckner lab) and Andrew Seeber (Seeber lab). In this meeting we discussed the aims of the club and how to involve additonal people including faculty at Harvard and Harvard Medical School. In terms of science we talked about the difficulties of monitoring chromatin marks in living cells and how to over come them. We talked about some of the "big questions" in chromatin i.e. how do DNA sequences of proteins scan the genome for their targets. Finally, we...

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