Laura Baranello

Laura Baranello

Principal Researcher
Telephone: +46852487337
Visiting address: Solnavägen 9, 17165 Stockholm
Postal address: C5 Cell- och molekylärbiologi, C5 CMB Baranello, 171 77 Stockholm

About me

  • Chromatin Biology, Topoisomerases and Cancer
    I received my PhD from the University of Bologna, Italy. During my PhD
    training with Prof. Capranico, I became fascinated by the mechanism of
    topoisomerases in regulating the topology of DNA during transcription and
    replication, a truly fundamental processes in life. As a postdoctoral fellow,
    I joined the laboratory of Dr. Levens at the National Institutes of Health
    (NIH). During my postdoctoral training I developed a variety of new protocols
    for next generation sequencing that opened new horizons for the study of DNA
    topology. Specifically, I discovered a new mechanism that synchronizes the
    activity of topoisomerase 1 with the state of RNA polymerase. In 2016, I
    became Assistant Professor–Group Leader and Wallenberg Academy Fellow at
    the Karolinska Institute, Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Stockholm
    (Sweden). My research program aims to define the still unknown mechanisms of
    topoisomerase regulation that sustain the proliferation of cancer cells. My
    long-term goal is to target the regulation of topoisomerases to halt cancer
    2021 Cancerfonden-Project Grant
    2021 Vetenskapsrådet-Project Grant (MH)
    2020 EMBO
    2019 NBIS
    2018 Cancerfonden-Project Grant
    2018 KID Funding
    2018 KI Fonder
    2016 Wallenberg Academy Fellow in Medicine
    2016 KI Faculty Funded Position as Assistant
    2016 Vetenskapsrådet-Starting Grant (MH)
    2016 VINNOVA Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship
    2012 FARE (Fellows Award for Research
    Excellence), NIH (USA)
    2010 - 2017 Postdoctoral Fellow with Dr. Levens, National Institutes of
    Health (NIH, USA)
    2007 - 2010 PhD in Cellular, Molecular and Industrial Biology, with Prof.
    Capranico, University of Bologna (Italy)


  • *Mechanism and targeting of topoisomerase regulation*
    Cancer is a biologically complex disease that causes significant deaths in
    the human population. Pharmaceuticals that inhibit enzymes called
    topoisomerases are effective at killing many types of cancer cells.
    Unfortunately, the body’s healthy cells are also damaged by this treatment.
    Development of tumor-specific topoisomerase inhibitor-based therapies will
    require better knowledge of the mechanism of topoisomerase activity.
    Topoisomerases are important cellular enzymes
  • they are involved in processes
    in which genes are copied, or when DNA is replicated prior to cell division.
    They unwind the DNA double helix, so that the enzymes that are going to
    transcribe genes or replicate DNA strands are able to do so. Although
    conventionally considered to be constitutively active enzymes, recent
    evidence show that topoisomerases execute their function through regulatory
    interactions with partner proteins that modulate their activity to affect the
    transcriptional outcome. Understanding the mechanism of this regulation
    might provide a new strategy to affect topoisomerase activity in cancer
    Our ongoing and future investigations are based on these findings. We use a
    variety of approaches including biochemical assays, next-generation
    sequencing techniques, genome editing and drug screens to:
    - Identify new proteins regulating topoisomerase 1 and topoisomerase 2
    activity. Among the potential partners we focus on transcription and
    chromatin factors.
    - Understand the molecular details of how topoisomerases are regulated by
    their protein partners during transcription.
    - Identify drugs targeting the stimulation of topoisomerase activity in
    cancer cells.
    *Conference organiser*
    EMBO workshop “DNA Topology in genomic transactions” [1]
    Cell and Molecular Biology seminar series


  • *Medical Program courses*
    "The healthy human"
    *PhD courses*
    "The epigenome: a platform for the integration of metabolic and signaling
    pathways in development and on the path to
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    "Cell cycle, cancer and anti-cancer
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  • jsessionid=a508b4a11f840c784347074883e5
  • jsessionid=3028485594cd40c9bb38f4515a0e


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