I am intrigued by the wonders of nature and the complexity of life.
My research revolves around the Guanine Quadruplex (G4); a DNA structure folded from one of the four letters of the genomic alphabet. In recent years, G4s have come into attention as genomic regulators and structural components of the 3D organization of DNA. Some transposable elements contain high densities of guanine molecules with the potential of folding into G4 structures. I investigate the implications of G4 spreading to new genomic locations by TE invasions in recent primate evolution. For example, a conserved gene may have a TE insertion nearby in human, but not in a related species such as Gorilla. G4 structures within the TE can have a regulatory effect on this gene, leading to differential expression patterns across species.