Welcome to the Penn Epigenetics Institute

Research

Drosophilia ovary with whole chromosome oligopaints

Eric Joyce Lab

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Research

Budding enteroids (small intestinal organoids)

Arjun Lab & Andrea Stout

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Research

Initiation of chromosome folding following mitosis

Gerd Blobel Lab

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Video

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Welcome from the Director

Shelley Berger, PhD

An epigenetic trait is defined as a stably heritable phenotype resulting from changes in a chromosome without alterations in the DNA sequence. At the Penn Epigenetics Institute, our group of talented faculty, trainees, and staff investigate all aspects of epigenetics – from its role in cancer, development and immunity to how it affects social structures and the way our brains function. Our goal is to advance basic and applied research in chromatin biology and epigenetics, building on current interest both in mechanisms underlying epigenetic regulation, and in unraveling genome-wide chromatin patterns.

The Institute was established in 2017 to bring together the epigenetics community at Penn, providing a space where scientific endeavors could flourish. With over 30 core labs, the Institute has created an unparalleled environment for collaboration and cutting-edge research, which is often published in top-tier journals. Faculty regularly collaborate with clinical investigators to conduct translational research that advances medical breakthroughs. Our reach goes beyond the Penn community, with participation from labs at CHOP, Wistar, Jefferson, Fox Chase, Drexel and Temple. We engage with nationally and internationally renowned scientists at our monthly seminars and annual symposia. We continue to build the Institute by recruiting new faculty, engaging in large group projects that lead to new research grant opportunities, and establishing state-of-the-art technology cores.

To learn more about the Penn Epigenetics Institute, explore our website!

Trainee Headline

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News

June 12, 2020

Doris Wagner recently received an NSF Plant Genome Research Program Grant

Doris Wagner recently received an NSF Plant Genome Research Program Grant to examine whether there are different modes of Polycomb recruitment in plants with small as opposed to large genomes….

June 11, 2020

Alex Wei, a PhD student (NGG program) from the Wu lab recently received an F31 grant

Alex Wei, a PhD student (NGG program) from the Wu lab recently received an F31 grant from NHGRI for research on “Dissecting Gene Regulatory Roles of TET Enzymes and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine…

June 09, 2020

Irfan Asangani received an NIH R01 grant

Irfan Asangani received an NIH R01 grant for research on the Role of MED1 in the AR-dependent transcription in advanced prostate cancer. Congratulations!

June 09, 2020

Irfan Asanagi received an award from the Sarcoma Foundation of America

Irfan Asanagi received an award from the Sarcoma Foundation of America for the proposal “EWS-FLI1 triggered opportunistic de novo enhancer assembly activates potential cellular therapy targets in Ewing Sarcoma.” Congratulations!

June 09, 2020

Welcoming Laura Pinheiro!

Laura Pinheiro is a new PhD student (BMB program) in the Wellen lab. Welcome to the Institute!

June 09, 2020

Joyce Liu was awarded an F30 fellowship

Joyce Liu, an MD/PhD student (BMB program) in the Wellen lab, was awarded an F30 fellowship. Congratulations!

June 09, 2020

Mike Murphy received an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Mike Murphy is a new PhD student (NGG program) in the Heller lab, and received an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship for research entitled “Sex-specific shifts in decision-making resulting from chronic-stress…

June 09, 2020

Marco Carpenter received the NIDA Drug Abuse Dissertation Research Award

Marco Carpenter, a graduate student in the Heller Lab, received the NIDA Drug Abuse Dissertation Research Award (R36) for work entitled “Nr4a1 activation suppresses Cocaine-induced behavior via epigenetic regulation of…

May 20, 2020

Roberto Bonasio promoted to tenure

Congratulations to Roberto Bonasio on his promotion to tenure!

May 07, 2020

Golnaz Vahedi is part of a team of researchers that received a grant

Golnaz Vahedi is part of a team of researchers that received a grant from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to investigate the impacts of childhood obesity on immune function. Read a…

Featured Labs

Anguera Lab

The Anguera lab studies X-inactivation and its role in immunity. Get to know them here!

Garcia Lab

The Garcia lab uses quantitative mass spectrometry-based proteomics to study epigenetics. Get to know them here!

Black Lab

The Black lab studies how particular proteins direct accurate chromosome segregation at mitosis. Get to know them here!

Publication Highlights

From Ben Black Lab

Zandarashvili L, Langelier MF, Velagapudi UK, Hancock MA, Steffen JD, Billur R, Hannan ZM, Wicks AJ, Krastev DB, Pettitt SJ, Lord CJ, Talele TT, Pascal JM, Black BE. Science. 2020;368(6486). pii: eaax6367. doi: 10.1126/science.aax6367. PMID:32241924

From Ken Zaret Lab

Iwafuchi M, Cuesta I, Donahue G, Takenaka N, Osipovich AB, Magnuson MA, Roder H, Seeholzer SH, Santisteban P, Zaret KS. Nat Genet. 2020. doi: 10.1038/s41588-020-0591-8. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID:32203463

From R. Babak Faryabi Lab

Schwartz GW, Zhou Y, Petrovic J, Fasolino M, Xu L, Shaffer SM, Pear WS, Vahedi G, Faryabi RB. Nat Methods. 2020. doi: 10.1038/s41592-020-0748-5. PMID:32123397

From Golnaz Vahedi Lab

Wang W, Fasolino M, Cattau B, Goldman N, Kong W, Frederick MA, McCright SJ, Kiani K, Fraietta JA, Vahedi G. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2020;

From Klaus Kaestner Lab
From Arjun Raj Lab
From Golnaz Vahedi Lab

Fasolino M, Goldman N, Wang W, Cattau B, Zhou Y, Petrovic J, Link VM, Cote A, Chandra A, Silverman M, Joyce EF, Little SC; HPAP Consortium, Kaestner KH, Naji A, Raj A, Henao-Mejia J, Faryabi RB, Vahedi G. Immunity. 2020. pii: S1074-7613(20)30030-3. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2020.01.003. [Epub ahead of print]

Videos

Contact the Institute

Epigenetics Institute
Department of Cell and Developmental Biology
9th Floor, Smilow Center for Translational Research
3400 Civic Center Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Sophia Castro-Anderson
Administrator
T: 215-573-5858
andes@pennmedicine.upenn.edu

Samantha Falk
Social Media Coordinator
samfalk@pennmedicine.upenn.edu