Dissection of cryptic ORFs in a model eukaryotic genome with a system biology approach

A major challenge of the post-genomic era is to decipher the information contained in the genomes and predict what proteins are produced and what their functions are.

Predicting which proteins are produced by a given gene remains a difficult challenge since messenger RNAs may be alternatively spliced, and a given messenger RNA may contain several open reading frames, a reference ORF and one or several alternative ORFs. These alternative ORFs are not predicted by conventional modeling algorithms. Yet, recent work has shown that such AltORFs are abundant in eukaryotic genomes and a large fraction could be translated into a protein with an undefined function. If these AltORFs encode proteins with important functions, we will have to revise how genomes are annotated and how proteomic analyzes are performed. This research project aims to study the AltORFs in a simple model, yeast, by a systems biology approach. The Landry/Roucou teams have complementary expertise in genomics, bioinformatics, proteomics and cell biology that will shed new light on these novel AltORFs.

  • Principal investigator:: Christian Landry (UniversitĂ© Laval)
  • Funded by: Fonds de Recherche du QuĂ©bec-Nature et technologies