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Julie Hollien

Title: Associate Professor
College: Science
School / Department: Biological Science
Mentoring Philosophy:

Our overall goal is to understand the mechanisms controlling mRNA turnover and the relationships between mRNA stability, localization, and cellular stress pathways. We are currently focused on how cells employ mRNA decay in regulating endoplasmic reticulum (ER) function. As the entry point for the secretory pathway, the ER is responsible for folding and processing an enormous flux of proteins, yet it must maintain a strict quality control system to ensure that misfolded proteins do not move to the cell surface. Disruption in the balance between incoming proteins and the folding capacity of the ER, termed ER stress, occurs in many human diseases and is counteracted by a collection of stress response pathways. One such pathway, which we call Regulated Ire1-dependent Decay (RIDD), initiates the rapid and widespread degradation of mRNAs associated with the ER membrane. RIDD has the potential both to immediately relieve the burden on the ER (by destroying the templates for proteins that are processed in the ER) and to clear out translocation and folding machinery to accommodate new translation of important ER-associated factors. We are investigating the mechanism and specificity of this pathway and its role in physiological stress.

Research Interests

General Interests
Specific Interests
  • Molecular biology of the cell
  • mRNA decay
  • endoplasmic reticulum function
  • stress responses