Dr. Hilary Coller’s current research focus is on understanding the molecular basis of quiescent cells (cells in a temporary non-dividing state). While the commonly held perception of quiescence is as a sleepy or default state, her research instead suggests that quiescence is an active and highly regulated process. Using sophisticated technologies and computational approaches to understand the cellular networks that underlie quiescence, Coller’s lab is applying next generation sequencing, mass spectrometry proteomics and mass spectrometry metabolomics to generate high-quality datasets defining the characteristics of proliferating and quiescent cells. They have also developed computational and algorithmic approaches for analyzing and interpreting these datasets. Coller’s specific research goals include translating these findings to understand the changes that occur during tumor dormancy as well as utilizing similar approaches to understand the changes that occur when fibroblasts become activated to cancer-associated fibroblasts.
Selected Cancer-Related Publications:
Evertts AG, Manning AL, Wang X, Dyson NJ, Garcia BA, Coller HA. H4K20 methylation regulates quiescence and chromatin compaction. Mol Biol Cell. 2013 Oct;24(19):3025-37. doi: 10.1091/mbc.E12-07-0529. Epub 2013 Aug 7.
Lemons JM, Feng XJ, Bennett BD, Legesse-Miller A, Johnson EL, Raitman I, Pollina EA, Rabitz HA, Rabinowitz JD, Coller HA. Quiescent fibroblasts exhibit high metabolic activity. PLoS Biol. 2010 Oct 19;8(10):e1000514. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1000514.
Sang L, Coller HA, Roberts JM. Control of the reversibility of cellular quiescence by the transcriptional repressor HES1. Science. 2008 Aug 22;321(5892):1095-100. doi: 10.1126/science.1155998.
Forman JJ, Legesse-Miller A, Coller HA. A search for conserved sequences in coding regions reveals that the let-7 microRNA targets Dicer within its coding sequence. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008 Sep 30;105(39):14879-84. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0803230105. Epub 2008 Sep 23.
Coller HA, Sang L, Roberts JM. A new description of cellular quiescence. PLoS Biol. 2006 Mar;4(3):e83. Epub 2006 Mar 7.