Rebecca Mosher

Assistant Professor - The School of Plant Sciences, Genetics GIDP, Bio5 Institute
Marley 821B
(520) 626-4185 / (520) 626-7765 (Lab)

Educational Background

  • 1998 Bachelor of Science with Honors, cum laude, The University of Arizona. Double major in Molecular & Cellular Biology and Biochemistry.
  • 2005 Doctorate of Philosophy, University Program in Genetics and Genomics, Department of Biology, Duke University.
  • 2005 – 2010 Postdoctoral Fellow, The Sainsbury Laboratory, Norwich UK; and the Department of Plant Sciences, Cambridge University, UK.

Research Interests

Eukaryotes contain an array of small RNAs capable of transcriptional and post-transcriptional gene regulation. These ubiquitous molecules are part of many biological processes, including development, response to the environment, and disease. Originally identified in plants, small RNAs are now studied in diverse organisms and are an important tool in human therapeutics. Our laboratory studies the synthesis and action of small RNA molecules with particular emphasis on epigenetic modifications driven by small RNAs and RNA Polymerase IV. We combine traditional genetic and molecular studies with whole-system computational biology in Arabidopsis thaliana and other plants.

Selected Publications

  • Matzke MA and Mosher RA. “RNA-directed DNA methylation: an epigenetic pathway of increasing complexity” Nature Reviews Genetics, 15:394-408, 2014.
  • Mosher RA. “Pinpointing a puzzling polymerase” Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, 19:865, 2012.
  • Mosher RA, Tan EH, Shin J, Fischer RL, Pikaard CS, Baulcombe DC. “Genomic imprinting of Pol IV-dependent siRNAs is regulated by a novel mechanism” PLoS ONE, 6:e25756, 2011.
  • Mosher RA. “Pol IV-dependent siRNAs in plants” In Non-coding RNAs in Plants, Erdmann VA and Barciszewski J, eds. (Springer-Verlag), 2011.
  • Mosher RA and Melnyk CW. “SiRNAs and DNA methylation: Seedy epigenetics” Trends in Plant Science, 15:204-210, 2010.
  • Mosher RA. “Maternal control of Pol IV-dependent siRNAs in Arabidopsis endosperm” New Phytologist, 186:358-364, 2010.
  • Djupedal I, Kos-Braun IC, Mosher RA, Söderholm N, Simmer F, Hardcastle TJ, Fender A, Heidrich N, Kagansky A, Bayne E, Wagner EGH, Baulcombe DC, Allshire RC, Ekwall K. “Analysis of small RNA in fission yeast; centromeric siRNAs are potentially generated through a structured RNA”, EMBO Journal, 28:3832-3844, 2009.
  • Mosher RA, Melnyk CW, Kelly KA, Dunn RW, Studholme D, Baulcombe DC. “Uniparental expression of Pol IV- dependent siRNAs in developing endosperm of Arabidopsis” Nature, 460:283-286, 2009.
  • Preuss SB, Costa-Nunes P, Tucker S, Pontes O, Lawrence RJ, Mosher RA, Kasschau KD, Carrington JC, Baulcombe DC, Viegas W, Pikaard CS. “Multimegabase silencing in nucleolar dominance involves siRNA-directed DNA methylation and specific methylcytosine-binding proteins” Molecular Cell, 32: 637-684, 2008.
  • Mosher RA, Schwach F, Studholme D, Baulcombe DC. “PolIVb influences RNA-directed DNA methylation independently of its role in siRNA biogenesis” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 105(8):1345-1350, 2008.

Teaching Responsibilities

  • PLS/MCB 360 - Plant Growth and Physiology

Areas of Research

  • Cell and Developmental Biology
  • Genetics and Epigenetics
  • Genomics, Bioinformatics, and Systems Biology

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