[PODCAST] How to become a heart cell with Benoit Bruneau
Gladstone Institute for Cardiovascular Disease
Hosted by Osama Ahmed/Carry-the-One Radio
Our bodies are made up of around 200 different cell types with very different structures and functions. Paradoxically, every cell contains the same genetic material. During development, proteins called transcription factors turn specific genes on and off. This can force a cell to develop into a brain cell rather than a skin cell, for example. But, when the right genes fail to turn on or when the wrong genes are expressed, developmental defects can occur.
Our guest this month, Dr. Benoit Bruneau, a Senior Investigator at the Gladstone Institute for Cardiovascular Disease, wants to know what makes a heart cell a heart cell. His lab is interested in how these different regulators interact, which factors are required for proper heart development, and which are altered in disease. This work answers important questions about how genes direct development, and it has potential applications for future therapies for heart disease.
More on the Bruneau Lab's research
Osama Ahmed is a graduate student at UCSF. He founded Carry The One Radio in 2009. Carry The One Radio is a series of short interviews with scientists. The show is run entirely by a small group of dedicated young scientists, mostly graduate students at UCSF, who want to bridge the gap between the scientific community and the general public. They value science education and encourage teachers and students alike to share freely available episodes with as many people as possible.