WELCOME TO THE CIFUENTES LAB
Laboratory of RNA Regulation
Department of Biochemistry
Boston University School of Medicine
Our overarching goal is to understand fundamental processes of RNA regulation both at mechanistic and systems level, using rigorous approaches. Above all, we pursue the projects that we are passionate about and keep us loving what we do every day. Find out more below!
It takes a village!
DANIEL CIFUENTES, PH.D.
Born, raised and PhD'ed in Barcelona, Daniel came to the US to train as a postdoc at Yale University. There he was initiated in the world of RNA regulation and zebrafish research. Daniel joined BU in 2016 as Assistant Professor. When not in the lab enjoys kayaking with the kids and taking care of the farm.
DMITRY KRETOV, PH.D.
Dmitry received his B.S. in Biology from Voronezh State University (Russia). During his M.S. he worked in the laboratory of Dr. Lev Ovchinnikov in the Institute of Protein Research (Russia). He earned his Ph.D. from University Paris-Saclay (France) where he investigated the biophysical properties of messenger ribonucleoprotein complexes (mRNPs). He joined the Cifuentes Lab in October 2016 to study the regulation of microRNA biogenesis and protein:RNA interactions. When Dmitry is not in the lab you can find him running along the Charles or strolling around Boston taking film photos.
The reputation of Taylor Quill precedes them, as they came to us with an impressive background. They have since become a valued Post-Doctoral Fellow on our team, adding important insights into our work.
From the sandy beaches of Cape Cod, MA, Stephen is a PhD candidate in the Cifuentes lab. He is currently studying study RNA regulation and transcriptional mechanisms in Filovirus. While always having loved virology, he began his scientific career studying a wide range of topics including parasite replication, cancer tumorigenesis, and enterotoxigenic E. coli. In his free time, Stephen enjoys making music with friends and taking care of his cat, Phoebe.
I was born in Texas and raised in Wisconsin. I attended the University of Michigan for my undergraduate degree in Biophysics and Biochemistry, which was where I really got into research. I joined BU in 2022 as a Research Technician, and I intend to proceed on to medical school in the future. Outside of the lab, I enjoy Formula 1, cricket, badminton, and the outdoors.
After growing up in Maryland and graduating high school in Ohio, Elaine came to Boston University for her Undergraduate Education. She joined the Cifuentes lab at the beginning of 2021, and is graduating in the spring of 2023. She plans on attending medical school in the future and hopes to continue exploring all that research has to offer.
Sam is a junior studying Math and Computer Science at Boston University in the College of Arts and Sciences. In the lab, Sam does data analysis regarding miRNA seed genesis. When not in the lab, Sam enjoys long walks in the park, ignoring the impending sense of doom, and cooking on the weekends.
Shang R, Kretov D, Adamson SI, Treiber T, Vedanayagam J, Chuang JH, Meister G, Cifuentes D, Lai EC. Regulated dicing of pre-mir-144 via reshaping of its terminal loop Nucleic Acids Research. 2022 Jul 22;50(13):7637-7654. PMID: 35801921
Hume AJ, Heiden B, Olejnik J, Suder EL, Ross S, Scoon WA, Bullitt E, Ericsson M, White MR, Turcinovic J, Thao TTN, Hekman RM, Kaserman JE, Huang J, Alysandratos KD, Toth GE, Jakab F, Kotton DN, Wilson AA, Emili A, Thiel V, Connor JH, Kemenesi G, Cifuentes D, Mühlberger E. Recombinant Lloviu virus as a tool to study viral replication and host responses. PLoS Pathogens. 2022 Feb;18(2):e1010268. PMID: 35120176
Hekman RM, Hume AJ, Goel RK, Abo KM, Huang J, Blum BC, Werder RB, Suder EL, Paul I, Phanse S, Youssef A, Alysandratos KD, Padhorny D, Ojha S, Mora-Martin A, Kretov D, Ash PEA, Verma M, Zhao J, Patten JJ, Villacorta-Martin C, Bolzan D, Perea-Resa C, Bullitt E, Hinds A, Tilston-Lunel A, Varelas X, Farhangmehr S, Braunschweig U, Kwan JH, McComb M, Basu A, Saeed M, Perissi V, Burks EJ, Layne MD, Connor JH, Davey R, Cheng JX, Wolozin BL, Blencowe BJ, Wuchty S, Lyons SM, Kozakov D, Cifuentes D, Blower M, Kotton DN, Wilson AA, Mühlberger E, Emili A. Actionable Cytopathogenic Host Responses of Human Alveolar Type 2 Cells to SARS-CoV-2. Molecular Cell. 2020 Dec 17;80(6):1104-1122. PMID: 33259812..
Kretov DA, Walawalkar IA, Mora-Martin A, Shafik AM, Moxon S, Cifuentes D. Ago2-Dependent Processing Allows miR-451 to Evade the Global MicroRNA Turnover Elicited during Erythropoiesis. Molecular Cell. 2020 Apr 16;78(2):317-328. PMID: 32191872.
- Article previewed in Molecular Cell (Vol. 78, issue 5, p808 June 4, 2020)
Vejnar CE, Abdel Messih M, Takacs CM, Yartseva V, Oikonomou P, Christiano R, Stoeckius M, Lau S, Lee MT, Beaudoin JD, Musaev D, Darwich-Codore H, Walther TC, Tavazoie S, Cifuentes D†, Giraldez AJ†. Genome wide analysis of 3' UTR sequence elements and proteins regulating mRNA stability during maternal-to-zygotic transition in zebrafish. Genome Research. 2019 Jul;29(7):1100-1114. PMID: 31227602. † Co-corresponding author.
Cifuentes D, Xue H, Taylor DW, Patnode H, Mishima Y, Cheloufi S, Ma E, Mane S, Hannon GJ, Lawson ND, Wolfe SA, Giraldez AJ. A novel miRNA processing pathway independent of Dicer requires Argonaute2 catalytic activity. Science. 2010 Jun 25. PMID: 20448148
We are always in the lookout for the intellectual curious and hard-working students and post-docs. If you are one of them, you will find a home in the Cifuentes lab.
In the Cifuentes lab we address the most challenging questions in the mRNA field with a rigorous mechanistic approach, navigating unchartered territories at the fore front of science. Being part of our team means to value efforts over results and being resilient to overcome the natural setbacks in science until that “Aha!” moment when all pieces fall into place and we are able to answer those unsolvable scientific questions to advance science and knowledge.
If you are up for a good intellectual challenge, in our lab you will finds a welcoming environment with room for develop your full potential, and above all, research scientific projects that will make you a better-rounded scientist.