Prof Daniel F Voytas

Prof Daniel F Voytas

University of Minnesota, United States of America

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Mobile DNA is an online, peer-reviewed, open access journal that publishes articles providing novel insights into DNA rearrangements in all organisms, ranging from transposition and other types of recombination mechanisms to patterns and processes of mobile element and host genome evolution.

In addition, the journal will consider articles on the utility of mobile genetic elements in biotechnological methods and protocols. Articles on microorganisms and viruses are particularly welcome.

Mobile DNA provides a unique forum for researchers to communicate their latest findings on mobile elements – from mechanistic insights to evolutionary impacts. I’m excited that our discipline finally has its own journal!

Professor Voytas received his PhD from Harvard Medical School in 1990. He undertook post doctoral work at John Hopkins University Medical School before moving to Iowa State University as an assistant professor in 1992. Professor Voytas was named a full professor in 2001, and in 2008, he moved to the University of Minnesota where he was named Director of the Center for Genome Engineering.

Professor Voytas’ research focuses on retrotransposons – mobile genetic elements that replicate by reverse transcription. His group is particularly interested in how retrotransposons select chromosomal integration sites, and his lab’s model is the Ty5 retrotransposons of Saccharomyces, which integrate preferentially into heterochromatin. Ty5 target specificity is mediated by an interaction between integrase and a heterochromatin protein that tethers the integration complex to target sties. Current work in the Voytas lab continues to dissect the mechanism of Ty5 target specificity. In addition, other retrotransposons are being analyzed to determine how widely targeting mechanisms are utilized.

The Voytas lab also implements methods for gene targeting using zinc finger nucleases. Professor Voytas is a founding member of the Zinc Finger Consortium (www.zincfingers.org).

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