Victoria Menendez Benito

Victoria Menendez Benito

Lecturer
Visiting address: ,
Postal address: H5 Laboratoriemedicin, H5 Klin Kemi, 141 52 Huddinge

About me

  • I am a cell and molecular biologist. I completed my PhD at Karolinska
    Institutet in 2006. After that, I did a postdoc at the labs of Prof. Neefjes
    and Prof. van Leeuwen at The Netherlands Cancer Institute. From 2014, I
    worked as a PI at BioNut (KI), studying protein quality control and cell
    division. I am also an engaged educator. I have trained undergraduate and
    graduate students in the lab and taught within the biomedical study line at
    KI. Currently, I am a lecturer at LabMed, teaching at the Biomedical
    Laboratory Science (BMA) program and continuing my work in cell and molecular
    biology.
    *Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) (2006)* “The ubiquitin-proteasome system
    during proteotoxic stress”, Karolinska Institutet
    *Bachelor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (2000)*, University of
    Oviedo (Spain)
    *Bachelor of Chemistry (1998)*, University of Oviedo (Spain)

Research

  • I am interested in understanding the basic principles that allow cells to
    partition their chromosomes, organelles, and proteins during cell division. I
    use budding yeast as a model organism and combine classical genetics,
    microscopy, and cell biology. My current research lines are:
    * *Molecular mechanisms of chromosome congression. *During cell division,
    sister chromatids align at either side of the spindle equator. This
    process, known as chromosome congression, contributes to the equal
    segregation of chromosomes. To achieve chromosome congression requires the
    coordinated action of microtubule regulatory proteins. In my lab, we have
    recently discovered that the plus-end tracking protein Bik1 (the budding
    yeast homolog of CLIP-170) plays an essential role in chromosome
    congression. We are investigating the molecular mechanisms of Bik1 and its
    interplay with kinesins and other microtubule-binding proteins.
    * *Asymmetries of the budding yeast spindle pole bodies (SPB).* The
    centrosome duplicates in a semi-conservative manner, each cell division
    generates two centrosomes that differ in age, composition, and function.
    In budding yeast, mother and daughter SPBs (the functional equivalent of
    centrosomes) have different ages. In my laboratory, we are searching for
    age-dependent post-translational modifications of the SPBs and evaluating
    their role in regulating cell cycle progression.
    * *Protein inheritance during asymmetric cell division. *Asymmetric
    dividing cells use their polarity to unequally segregate cellular
    components (including organelles, proteins and RNAs) between daughter
    cells. This mechanism allows cells to propagate fitness and specific
    traits to individual progeny. However, a global view of the proteins with
    asymmetric inheritance and their link with lifespan is still lacking,
    partly because birth-dating and following proteins at cellular resolution
    is technically difficult. In my lab, we address this challenge using a
    genetic method named recombination induced tag exchange (RITE), which
    allows visualizing protein inheritance in budding yeast by microscopy.

Teaching

  • Along with my research activities, I teach within the biomedical study line
    in four main areas: biochemistry, cell and molecular biology, and laboratory
    methodology.
    I organise and teach Bachelor Biomedical Laboratory Science (BMA) and
    Dentistry programs courses. I am also an examiner of the final research
    project presentations in the Master in Biomedicine program. I contribute as
    an invited lecturer on molecular biology techniques in the Bachelor in
    Biomedicine. I have directed and co-directed PhD courses (“The Cell
    Cycle” and “Fluorescence Microscopy: High content image acquisition and
    Analysis”) and lectured at the PhD course “Microscopy: Improve your
    imaging skills - from sample preparation to image analysis”. Furthermore, I
    train research students in the laboratory and have successfully supervised
    two doctoral and four master theses and trained three short-term master
    students.
    My teaching philosophy is based on my excitement for the biomedical sciences,
    my deep care for the success of my students, and my wish to provide students
    with analytical skills and critical thinking that will serve them in whatever
    career path they choose. To bring effectiveness and meaning to the teaching
    and learning experience, I focus on three goals:
    * Promoting active learning by designing learning activities where the
    students can directly apply concepts and theory.
    * Training the students in critical thinking skills by using inquiry-based
    instruction.
    * Fostering learning through effective communication and collaboration by
    designing learning activities based on group work.

Articles

All other publications

Grants

  • Mapping the inheritance of the yeast proteome to discover mechanisms of ageing and rejuvenatio
    Karolinska Institutet - KID funding
    1 January 2024
  • The centrosome-primary cilium cycle in kidney disease
    Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research
    1 January 2021 - 1 January 2022
  • Mapping the inheritance of the yeast proteome to discover mechanisms of ageing and rejuvenation
    Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education
    1 January 2019 - 1 January 2026
  • Mapping the inheritance of the yeast proteome to discover mechanisms of aging and rejuvenation
    Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
    1 January 2018 - 1 January 2021
  • Developing a yeast library for systematic analysis of in vivo protein dynamics.
    Carl Tryggers Stiftelse för Vetenskaplig Forskning
    1 January 2017 - 1 January 2018
  • Deciphering the role of centrosomes in asymmetric cell division
    Åke Wibergs Stiftelse
    1 January 2016 - 1 January 2017
  • Deciphering the role of centrosomes in asymmetric cell division
    Åke Wibergs Stiftelse
    1 January 2015 - 1 January 2016
  • Proteomics and genome-wide screening of yeast to decipher the centrosome polarization; a key event in asymmetric cell division
    Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
  • Deciphering the role of centrosomes in asymmetric cell division
    Karolinska Institutet _ KID funding

Employments

  • Lecturer, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 2022-

Degrees and Education

  • Doctor Of Philosophy, Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Karolinska Institutet, 2006
  • MSc Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Oviedo, 2000
  • MSc Chemistry, University of Oviedo, 1998

Supervisor

  • Jana Lalakova, 2015
  • Alexander Julner, Microtubule and chromosome dynamics during mitosis in budding yeast
  • Marjan Abbasi, Microtubule and Spindle Pole Body regulation in the budding yeast mitotic spindle

Thesis evaluation

  • Laura Matellán Fernández, Examination board member, Andalusian Molecular Biology and Regenerative Medicine Centre, Study of asymmetries associated with the mitotic spindle of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, 2020
  • Anna Bosch Commas, Examination board member, Genetics, University of Barcelona, USP25 deubiquitylating enzyme: substrate search and structure-function relationship, 2017
  • Helena Silva Cascales, Examination board member, CMB, Karolinska Institute, Cyclins on the move: a time and a place for Cyclin A2 and cycling B1 in the human cell cycle, https://openarchive.ki.se/xmlui/bitstream/handle/10616/45165/Thesis_Helen_%20Silva_Cascales.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y, 2016
  • Sjoerd van Devender, Examination board member, Leiden University, Tracking the big ones: Novel dynamics of organelles and micromolecular complexes during cell division and aging, https://scholarlypublications.universiteitleiden.nl/handle/1887/35931, 2015

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