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Our lab focuses on the regulation of Pol I activity, with an emphasis on elongation.                     The aims of my PhD are

1) To characterize intrinsic control of Pol I elongation, specifically by exploring the contribution of the trigger loop to catalysis. This will provide insights into the cooperation between Pol I catalysis and rRNA processing as well as the different contributions the trigger loop has to Pol I and Pol II, despite its high degree of conservation.


2) Determine the involvement of Spt6 in Pol I regulation. Spt6 is a known Pol II elongation factor and histone chaperone. However, recent evidence suggests that a major role of Spt6 is to control Pol I activity.

And 3) Elucidate the connection between Pol I elongation rate and rRNA processing and ribosome biogenesis. Previously it was shown that an elongation defective Pol I mutant caused faulty rRNA maturation, furthermore ribosome assembly was not properly performed. Preliminary data suggests that there is a link between growth rate, Pol I activity, proper rRNA processing, and ribosome biogenesis. Additionally, a threshold Pol I elongation rate may exist, where below rRNA is not correctly folded and processed co-transcriptionally.

List of Publications

First Author:

Viktorovskaya, OV, Engel, KL, French, SL, Cui, P, Vandeventer, PJ, Pavlovic, EM, Beyer, AL, Kaplan, CD, Schneider, DA (2013) Divergent contributions of conserved active site residues to transcription by eukaryotic RNA polymerases I and II. Cell Rep 4: 974-84. PMID: 23994471


Middle Author:


In Submission/Preparation:

Suleyman Ucuncuoglu, Krysta L. Engel, David D. Dunlap, David A. Schneider, Laura Finzi. A single molecule study of transcription elongation by RNA Polymerase I. (In revision at NAR).

Engel KL, Viktorovskaya OV, French SL, Beyer AL, Schneider DA (2014). Spt6 is required for synthesis of ribosomal RNA (in submission at PNAS).

Engel KL, Viktorovskaya OV, Schneider DA (2014). Pol I elongation rate and rRNA processing are coupled (in preparation).

My PubMed Search


Schneider Lab and Friends


lab_officecandid lab photo 2013


Graduate Student Research Days, 2012. Presentation Award.Comeaux_Engel copy

Our Collaborators

Craig Kaplan’s Lab, Texas A&M

Ann Beyer’s Lab, University of Virginia

Larry Rothblum’s Lab, University of Oklahoma

Jonathon Weissman’s Lab, UCSF

My Thesis Committee

Natalia Kedishvili, Ph.D.

Charles T. Turnbough, Ph.D.

Mary-Ann Bjornsti, Ph.D.

Hengbin Wang, Ph.D.



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