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DBBS Faculty Member
Andrew Yoo, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Developmental Biology

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The general goal of my research is to understand molecular mechanisms underlying the specification of cell types and developing methods to alter the fates of cells in vitro and in vivo. We recently discovered that small RNA molecules, microRNAs, could promote generation of post-mitotic neurons by demonstrating that expression of neuron-specific microRNAs and neural factors in non-neuronal cell types could directly reprogram their cell fates into functional neurons. We currently aim to 1) develop tissue culture models of neurological diseases using patient-specific neurons and to study cell autonomous properties associated with disease states in induced neurons, and 2) to identify molecular mechanisms underlying the neurogenic activity of neuron-specific microRNAs. We will use multiple interdisciplinary approaches (molecular genetics, genomics and biochemistry) to delineate how these microRNAs promote neuronal fates.

Research Publications

Yoo AS, Sun AX, Li L, Shcheglovitov A, Portmann T, Li Y, Lee-Messer C, Dolmetsch RE, Tsien RW, Crabtree GR (2011 Jul 13). MicroRNA-mediated conversion of human fibroblasts to neurons. Nature. 476 (7359): 228-31.

Yoo AS, Staahl BT, Chen L, Crabtree GR (2009 Jul 30). MicroRNA-mediated switching of chromatin-remodelling complexes in neural development. Nature. 460 (7255): 642-6.

Yoo AS, Crabtree GR (2009 Apr). ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling in neural development. Curr Opin Neurobiol. 19 (2): 120-6.

Yoo AS, Greenwald I (2005 Nov 25). LIN-12/Notch activation leads to microRNA-mediated down-regulation of Vav in C. elegans. Science. 310 (5752): 1330-3.

Yoo AS, Bais C, Greenwald I (2004 Jan 30). Crosstalk between the EGFR and LIN-12/Notch pathways in C. elegans vulval development. Science. 303 (5658): 663-6.

Yoo AS, Cheng I, Chung S, Grenfell TZ, Lee H, Pack-Chung E, Handler M, Shen J, Xia W, Tesco G, Saunders AJ, Ding K, Frosch MP, Tanzi RE, Kim TW (2000 Sep). Presenilin-mediated modulation of capacitative calcium entry. Neuron. 27 (3): 561-72.

Contact Info
Andrew Yoo, Ph.D.
Office Phone: 314-362-1811
Campus Box: 8103