The Center for Epigenetics and Stem Cell Biology

stem cell

Director: Kenneth R. Peterson, Ph.D., Vice Chair of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Members of the Center for Epigenetics and Stem Cell Biology investigate how cells become specialized in their function. This process is referred to as cell differentiation. Cell differentiation is a hallmark of embryogenesis. During embryonic development, cells increase in number, become specialized, and organize into tissues. Some examples of cell specialization include the formation of red blood cells, which transport oxygen; muscle cells, which produce movement; and neurons, which allow us to reason. The developmental fate of an undifferentiated cell, also referred to as a stem cell, is dictated by the cell's genetic program and its interactions with its environment. Acquisition of a specific cell fate is associated with the systematic modulation of regulatory processes controlling the function of genes and proteins. Abnormalities in cell differentiation cause birth defects and lead to adult disease. Understanding molecular mechanisms controlling cell differentiation will result in the development of new strategies for the treatment of disease. These approaches will include the generation of unique drug- and cell-based therapies. The applications of these new therapeutic tools will be numerous and include potential treatments for infertility and a diverse range of debilitative diseases, such as, cancer, diabetes, liver fibrosis, stroke, heart disease, vascular and blood diseases, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, and spinal cord injury, in addition to many others.


 Omar Aljitawi

 Udayan Apte

 Fariba Behbod

 Justin Blumenstiel

 Merlin Butler

 Nikki Cheng

 Ivan Damjanov

 Buddhadeb Dawn

 Michael Detamore

 Animesh Dhar

 Luciano DiTacchio

 Patrick Fields

 Timothy Fields

 Joseph Fontes

 Rama Garimella

 Tomoo Iwakuma

 Rajasingh Johnson

 Adam Krieg

 Jed Lampe

 Joan Lewis-Wambi

 Benyi Li

 Xiaogang Li

 Stuart Macdonald

Ann Manzardo

 Arindam Paul

 Soumen Paul

 Kenneth Peterson

 M.A. Karim Rumi

 Irfan Saadi

Chad Slawson

 Michael J. Soares

 Katherine Swenson-Fields

 Russell Swerdlow

 Jay Vivian

 Jinxi Wang

 Mark Weiss

 Thomas Yankee

 Alan Yu

 Hao Zhu




Last modified: Feb 24, 2014