Rice University


CTBP Journal Club


"Trailer-end Spacers Conservation - Is It Due to Coalescence or Selection"

Speaker: Pu Han
Date: December 11, 2014
Time: 12:30 p.m.
Location: BioScience Research Collaborative
10th Floor, Room 1060 A/B

A light lunch will be served



CRISPR is a newly discovered adaptive immune system of prokaryotes. It can incorporate DNA pieces from the invading genetic materials. These incorporated DNAs, termed “spacers”, provide immunity against the same invading genetic materials. The incorporation of spacers is unidirectional. Experimental data and simulations show that spacers are conserved at the “trailer- end” of the spacer array [1, 2]. It can be explained by the selection [1, 2] or by the “coalescence” [1, 3]. I will give a brief introduction about CRISPR and the population genetics, and discuss why spacers are conserved at the trailer end.

Reference Materials:

1.   Weinberger AD, et al. (2012) Persisting Viral Sequences Shape Microbial CRISPR-based Immunity. PLoS Comput. Biol., 8(4): e1002475.

2.   He J, Deem MW (2011) Heterogeneous diversity of spacers within CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats). Phys. Rev. Lett., 105: 128102.

3.   Blythe RA, McKane AJ (2007) Stochastic Models of Evolution in Genetics, Ecology and Linguistics, J. Stat. Mech., P07018. 

About the CTBP Journal Club

The CTBP Journal Club (JC) is organized and managed by postdoctoral fellows and graduate students.

The CTBP JC meetings are held once a week and involve a short presentation on a current research paper by a graduate student or postdoctoral fellow, followed by discussion amongst all participants.

Graduate students and postdoctoral fellows who wish to participate should submit a proposal for a presentation on a particular recent research paper.

The Objective of the CTBP Journal Club

The objective of the CTBP JC is for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to develop and hone their presentation skills, develop Q & A skills, gain exposure to a broad variety of research topics, and experience the processes that journal editors encounter in deciding on the relevance of submitted manuscripts to their journal audience. More importantly, the CTBP JC stimulates the discussion of new ideas for research.