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The Garaycoechea group studies how the interaction between metabolism and DNA repair leads to mutation in a physiological setting.
DNA carries the instructions of life, but is also under constant attack. The resulting damage, if not repaired, leads to mutation and disease. Common environmental mutagens include sunlight and cigarette smoke, but the integrity of DNA is also threatened by chemicals produced by our own body. Our group wants to understand what are the metabolites that arise within cells that damage DNA, and the consequences of this damage. Particularly, we are interested in understanding the maintenance of genome stability in stem cells, the rare cell populations responsible for tissue maintenance.
Recent sequencing efforts have revealed that cancer types carry different patterns of mutation, suggesting that what causes the damage or how it is repaired varies from tissue to tissue. Our research will therefore aim to answer fundamental questions relating to the maintenance of genome integrity in a physiological setting: are there tissue-specific mutagenic processes? What are the endogenous metabolites that damage DNA? And what are the DNA repair/tolerance mechanisms that lead to mutagenesis in vivo? Our lab applies tools from the fields of DNA repair and stem cell biology, as well as ESC and organoid culture, genomics and mouse genetics to interrogate these fundamental questions.
Garaycoechea JI, Crossan GP, Langevin F, Mulderrig L, Louzada S, Yang F, Guilbaud G, Park N, Roerink S, Nik-Zainal S, Stratton MR, Patel KJ
Pontel LB, Rosado IV, Burgos-Barragan G, Garaycoechea JI, Yu R, Arends MJ, Chandrasekaran G, Broecker V, Wei W, Liu L, Swenberg JA, Crossan GP, Patel KJ
Garaycoechea JI, Crossan GP, Langevin F, Daly M, Arends MJ, Patel KJ
Juan Garaycoechea began his scientific career in Argentina, where in 2010 he obtained a first-class degree in Biotechnology from Universidad Nacional de Quilmes. He was then awarded the César Milstein scholarship to carry out his PhD studies at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB), in Cambridge, UK. At the end of his studies, Juan was awarded a Junior Research Fellowship by King’s College, Cambridge to support his post-doctoral research at the LMB. He is a group leader at the Hubrecht Institute from October 2018, where he studies the metabolites that damage DNA and how this leads to mutation in a physiological context.