'Somatic copy-number changes in autoimmunity' - HGEN 396 Undergraduate Research Project Application Form

Supervisor's Name: Constantin Polychronakos

Supervisor's Email: constantin.polychronakos [at] mcgill.ca

Supervisor's Phone: 514-412-4400 ext. 22866

Supervisor's Website: http://muhc.ca/research/researcher/constantin-polychronakos-md

Supervisor's department: Human Genetics

Course number: HGEN 396 (Human Genetics)

Term: Summer 2013

Project start date: Monday, May 6, 2013

Project end date: Friday, August 30 2013

Project title: Somatic copy-number changes in autoimmunity

Project description: T-lymphocyte mediated autoimmunity is due to loss of self-tolerance by lineages of autoreactive T-cells that proliferate extensively, creating a disease-causing mass of cells out of a handful of original cells whose T-cell receptor recognises autoantigen. During this mitotic cascade, somatic mutations can arise creating mosaicism for copy-number alterations. We are currently studying pathogenic lymphocytes from two such diseases, rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes by high-resolution microarrays. The student will confirm the microarray findings with MLPA. The project also involves separating T-cell subsets by flow sorting or magnetic beads, short-term primary cell cultures and other basic immunological and molecular biology techniques.

Prerequisite: 1 term completed at McGill + CGPA of 3.0 or higher; or permission of instructor.

Grading scheme (The final report must be worth at least 50% of final grade): Final grade shall be based on an evaluation of laboratory (or equivalent) performance (40%), a final written report (50%), and an oral presentation (10%) by the supervisor. Details of the evaluation scheme will be provided by HGEN to supervisors and applicants.

Other project information: Large genetics-immunology lab with three graduate students, two post-docs and five research personnel.

Project status: This project is open to applicant.

How students can apply: Please contact PI e-mail

Ethics, safety, and training: Supervisors are responsible for the ethics and safety compliance of undergraduate students. This project involves: Animal subjects; Human subjects; Handling chemicals.