High Impact Factor Journal article from the College of Science

Written by on March 19, 2012 in Science - Comments Off on High Impact Factor Journal article from the College of Science

Dr. Alex Kouzmenko, Professor of Molecular Biology and Program Director, Life Sciences Program, in the College of Science and General Studies, co-authored a research paper recently published in “Molecular Cell”, a leading biomedical journal with a current impact factor of 14.2:


According to the 2011 Thomson Reuters Journal Citation Report, only around 1% of major international journals across all disciplines and less than 4% of biomedical science journals have impact factor above 10.

The publication entitled “Epigenetic Silencing of Core Histone Genes by HERS in Drosophila” is a result of collaboration with the University of Tokyo and Kyoto Prefectural Medical University in Japan. The study addressed molecular mechanisms of the cell-cycle specific regulation of histone gene expression.

Histones are fundamental components of eukaryotic chromosomes that maintain and regulate appropriate chromatin conformation to support all genomic DNA-dependent processes, including transcription, replication, repair, and mitosis. In early S phase of the cell cycle, histone genes are activated to supply histone proteins for the integration of newly synthesized DNA into nucleosomes. At the end of S phase, histone gene transcription is rapidly turned down, ending the histone protein production. However, the molecular basis of cell cycle-dependent silencing of histone expression remained unknown. By using Drosophila as an experimental genetic model system, this study has identified a novel regulatory factor designated HERS (Histone gene-specific Epigenetic Repressor in late S phase) and determined molecular mechanisms of the cell cycle phase-specific silencing of histone genes by HERS.

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