Genome Engineering

By understanding the human genome, we're learning how to prevent and cure genetic disorders.

Understanding Alzheimer's

Can we cure Alzheimer's within our lifetime? The possibility looks more like reality thanks to the work of Karen Ashe, MD, PhD. She has studied the disease for more than 26 years at the University of Minnesota, focusing on basic, translational, and clinical medicine.

Ashe’s current research interest involves the discovery of tau mutations that cause neurodegeneration. Ashe created tau transgenic mice to study tau-based mechanisms of memory loss and neurodegeneration. These mouse models have been used by researchers across the globe to further study the basis of memory loss.

Since 2006, Ashe has headed the N. Bud Grossman Center for Memory Research and Care, dedicated to the care and prevention of Alzheimer's.

 

Genome engineering research across the U

Identifying disease-causing genes and developing new therapeutic strategies.


The Department of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Development (GCD) spans a broad spectrum of biological disciplines, including the storage and expression of information (genetics), its translation into the workings of individual cells (cell biology), and the assembly of cells into tissues and organ systems (development).


Strongly committed to research as a component of each faculty member's career. Involved in interdisciplinary studies to provide expertise in medical genetics. Providers of high quality, compassionate, and thoughtful care of patients and families with genetic conditions.


Provides genomics research services committed to advancing genomics in Minnesota. Maintains and acquires state-of-the-art instrumentation and offers an array of services including sequencing, expression, genotyping, nucleic acid extraction and related support. Strives to keep pace with the ever-broadening world of “omics” technologies (genomics, epigenomics, metabolomics), and to expand our role at the University and the wider biotech community.


Providing a comprehensive range of mouse embryo manipulation services, a micro-injection laboratory, tissue culture, and administration capabilities in conjunction with dedicated animal housing space. Housed within the Variety Club Research Center's specific pathogen-free animal facility.

genome sequencing

Recent publications

  • Cermak T, Starker CG, Voytas DF. 2015. Efficient design and assembly of custom TALENS using the golden gate platform. Methods in Molecular Biology 1239:133-159.
  • Linck R,  Fu X, Lin J, Ouch C, Schefter A, Steffen W,  Warren P,  Nicastro D. 2014. Insights into the structure and function of ciliary and flagellar doublet microtubules: Tektins, Ca2+-binding proteins, and stable protofilaments. Journal of Biological Chemistry 289(25):17427-17444.
  • Minkina A, Matson CK, Lindeman RE, Ghyselinck NB, Bardwell VJ, Zarkower D. 2014. DMRT1 protects male gonadal cells from retinoid-dependent sexual transdifferentiation. Developmental Cell 29(5):511-520.

Grants and awards

  • Perry Hacket, PhD, Genetics, Cell Biology and Development, "Sleeping Beauty" therapies licensed for $100 million (2015)
  • Harry Orr, PhD, Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, awarded the Dean's Distinguished Research Lectureship (2014)
  • Harry Orr, PhD, Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, elected to the Institute of Medicine (2014)