June 14, 2022

Welcome to the June session!

We are excited to host two great talks this month:

A tale of two genomes: DNA repair in the mitochondria and the nucleus

Agnel Sfeir, PhD


A focus on B cells: DNA repair & beyond

Michela Di Virgilio, PhD

MDC, Germany

Chairs of the session will be:

About the speaker: Agnel Sfeir

Agnel Sfeir

Agnel Sfeir is a group leader at the Sloan Kettering Institute, in NY.
She received her Ph.D. in Cell Biology in the laboratory of Jerry Shay and Woodring Wright at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in 2006. She joined Titia de Lange’s lab at the Rockefeller University, for post-doctoral training, until 2012. She has been a Skirball Associate Professor of Genetics at NYU Langone Medical Center and since 2021, she is a Member and Pain Webber Chair of Cancer Genetics at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.
The Sfeir lab research focuses on how mammalian cells ensure the stability of their genomes and avoid becoming tumorigenic.
Agnel Sfeir elucidated the role of the telomere binding protein, POT1 in counteracting telomere replication stress and tumorigenesis. She has intensely studied micro-homology mediated end-joining (MMEJ) and the role of polymerase theta in error-prone DNA repair pathways. She has recently discovered important aspects of the regulation of mtDNA replication, how mitochondria manage double strand breaks and the origin of the mtDNA common deletion. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including Mathers Foundation award, Pew Innovation Fund, Hirschl-Weill-Caulier Career Scientist Award, Edward Mallinckrodt Jr. Foundation Scholar Award, Pershing Square Sohn Prize for Young Investigator, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation award, NIH Director’s New Innovator Award.

About the speaker: Michela Di Virgilio

Michela Di Virgilio

Michela Di Virgilio is a group leader at the Max-Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) in Berlin.
She received her Ph.D. in 2006 (Università degli Studi di Milano and Columbia University). She has been a staff scientist at the Department of Genetics & Development, Institute for Cancer Genetics, Columbia University, NY, from 2002 to 2007, then she moved to the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology at The Rockefeller University, NY, until 2014. She is Member of the Adjunct Faculty, Laboratory of Molecular Immunology, at The Rockefeller University, NY.
Since 2014, she leads the Laboratory of DNA repair and Maintenance of Genome Stability, Max-Delbruck Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC), in Berlin.
With her team of ten, she investigates how B lymphocytes ramp up the immune defense, and which molecular processes help them modify their DNA so effective antibodies can be created. Di Virgilio elucidated the multiple roles of 53BP1 in the management of programmed double strand breaks and characterized several factors crucial for class switch recombination and for preserving B cells stability. She is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including ERC Starting Grant 2014, BSIO Female Independency Award 2014 and funding from Helmholtz Association for Young Investigators.

About GiiN webinar series

The first GiiN Webinars Series (2021-2022) happens every second Tuesday of the month. It covers latest cutting-edge research in the field of genome stability from two scientists working either in the Italian territory or abroad. This series operates under the kind patronage of AIRC Italian Foundation for Cancer Research.

For more information, to volunteer or to be added to our mailing list, contact us at genomeintegrityitaly@gmail.com