Thomas Miller says: “Each time our cells divide they must accurately duplicate their DNA so that both daughter cells receive an identical set of genetic instructions. A failure to accurately duplicate the genome can lead to genome instability and cause age-related disorders, including cancer. Genomes of all organisms are duplicated by protein machines called replisomes, which frequently encounter ‘obstacles’ that can prevent faithful DNA replication. This project will reveal how replisomes normally overcome these obstacles in healthy cells and why a failure in these processes causes human disease. To do this, we will use electron microscopy to image replisomes as they encounter and coordinate the repair of DNA-protein crosslinks (DPCs), a common and highly toxic obstacle to DNA replication. Our results will provide insights into how our cells maintain genome stability and may identify opportunities for enhancing current chemotherapies that kill cancer cells by forming DPCs on DNA.”
Thomas Miller is British and relocated in 2021 from his postdoctoral position at the Francis Crick Institute in London to the Center for Chromosome Stability at ICMM to establish his independent research group. He says: “The CCS at ICMM is ideally suited for my research and I look forward to contributing to the growing structural and chromatin biology communities in Copenhagen. My distinct approach will provide numerous opportunities for collaborative work locally”.