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Rebecca Newman

Research Interests

Supervisor: Martin Turner

I am interested in the post-transcriptional mechanisms that control B-cell development and differentiation. The Turner lab has generated mice which have a B cell-specific deletion of the RNA-binding protein ZFP36l1 (Tis11b), and mice that overexpress a ZFP36l1-GFP fusion protein in B cells. Tis11b (ZFP36l1) is a member of the Tristetraprolin family of RBP, which bind to AU-rich elements in the 3’ untranslated regions of mRNAs.  Tis11b negatively regulates gene expression by destabilising and inhibiting translation of its target mRNAs. Our data show that mice which have a B cell specific deletion of Tis11b lack MZ B cells, and conversely, mice which overexpress a Tis11b-GFP fusion protein in B cells have an expanded MZ B cell compartment. My PhD project is focused on understanding the molecular basis for abnormal MZ B cell development in these genetically-modified mice.