Research

My current project at the Laboratory of Algal Systems, Synthetic and Systems Biology (LASSB, NYUAD); ORFeome synthesis and interactome mapping of the Prochlorococcus marinus. This project aims to build biological resources to characterize Prochlorococcus marinus MED4 and NATL1A, as representative high-light (HL) and low-light (LL) adapted strains of the cyanobacteria P. marinus. As clone resources are not available currently for these strains, this project initiated de novo constructions of the MED4 and NATL1A ORFeomes synthetically. The complete ORFeomes of both MED4 and NATL1A strains were generated in collaboration with Twist Bioscience (San Francisco, CA, USA) and Beijing Genome Institute’s Genome Synthesis and Editing Platform (Shenzhen, Guangdong, China). The synthesized ORFs are flanked with the ATTL sequences allowing sub-cloning into a variety of vectors using the Gateway cloning system. We have generated the complete MED4 library of cloned ORFs into the CrY2H compatible vectors. The next phase of this project consists of intra- and inter-strain interactome mapping of MED4 and NATL1A ORFs to establish a comparative study of the protein-protein interactions for these differently light-adapted strains. The availability of gene annotation and sequencing data has helped to define a set of ~ 1000 conserved core genes shared between the two clades and a large set of distinct genes that can play a role in adaptation to environmental conditions; our goal is to provide a systems-level investigation to better define their functional associations, as well as any rewiring of interactions that may have occurred as part of their adaptive evolution to low- and high-light conditions.