2022 MRM Talks: Dr. Roméo Blanc and Dr. Soeren Huettner


The MRM Network presents: the MRM Talks. Join us every fourth Thursday at noon to learn more about stem cells and regenerative medicine. The webinar series will feature leading scientists in the field, including MRM Principal Investigators and external guest speakers.

For each seminar, we will also highlight the work of one MRM Trainee, who will present alongside our guest speaker.

In this edition of the MRM Talks:

Dr. Roméo Blanc,
Research Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Physiology
University of Rochester Medical Center

“Targeting H4K20 methylation to rejuvenate aged stem cell epigenome and regenerative function”


Dr. Soeren Huettner,
Postdoctoral Fellow in Colin Crist’s Lab,
McGill University

“Absence of skeletal muscle development, regeneration and homeostasis in mice lacking the CTCF code for 3D genome architecture”

THURSDAY, October 27, 2022
12:00 – 1:00 PM


Missed the presentation? You can catch up on our Youtube ChannelNOTE: This video is only available to MRM members. Please contact us at mrm@mcgill.ca to verify your status and request access to the recording.


About the speakers:

Roméo Blanc, Ph.D., is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology at the University of Rochester Medical Center. He obtained his Ph.D. at McGill University (Montréal, Canada) under the supervision of Dr. Richard, where he elucidated the role of arginine methylation in epigenetics-mediated stem cell fate regulation. During his post-doctoral training, he demonstrated that pro-inflammatory factors can directly target muscle stem cells. Dr. Blanc and coworkers identified chemokine-induced signaling repressing myogenic differentiation and impairing regeneration. Targeting the chemokine-receptor rejuvenates aged muscle healing and promotes young-stem cell engraftment in an aged-host.
In his current lab, he aims at identifying how the aged inflammatory niche affects stem cell fate and function by altering their epigenome. Dr. Blanc was recently awarded an NIH K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award by the NIA to study how epigenetic changes during aging lead to stem cell loss of quiescence and function. He will focus on deciphering how the aging-associated erosion of H4K20 methylation affects both muscle and hematopoietic stem cell fate, and whether rejuvenation of H4K20 methylation status can restore adult stem cell regenerative capacity in aged mice.

Dr. Soeren Huettner was trained as a “state-approved technical assistant for chemical and biological laboratories” in 2009 in Germany. Afterward, he studied Biochemistry/Molecular Biology at the Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena in Germany, where he received his Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in 2012, followed by the Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Molecular Medicine in 2014.
He then entered a Ph.D. program at the Leibniz Institute on Aging – Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI) in Jena under the supervision of Dr. Julia von Maltzahn, where he earned his doctoral degree (Dr. rer. nat.) 2021 in Molecular Biology. His work uncovered a transcriptional repression mechanism of skeletal muscle stem cell differentiation which is normally controlled by myogenic miRNAs but deregulated in human rhabdomyosarcoma.
For his postdoctoral training, Dr. Soeren Huettner relocated to Canada and joined Dr. Colin Crist’s laboratory at the Department of Human Genetics at McGill University and the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Jewish General Hospital, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. His current research focuses on 3D genome architecture and its implications for stem cell lineage specification and tissue homeostasis. He applies novel genetic tools in the mouse and in pluripotent stem cells to determine how CTCF-dependent changes in genome architecture orchestrate the myogenic program.


We want to hear from you, and we welcome your suggestions for speakers!
If you are interested in hosting an invited speaker, please get in touch with us.

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