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AGEP-T FRAME Fellow: Jason Quinones



Jason Quinones

Graduate Student, Stony Brook University

Department of Molecular & Cellular Pharmacology

Specialty: Genome Integrity & Carcinogenesis/ DNA Repair                                 

AGEP-T FRAME Research Mentor: Dr. Bruce Demple

Email: Jason.Quinones@stonybrook.edu


After successful completion of the PhD, I hope to secure a rewarding position in the pharmaceutical industry or biotechnology sector. My long-term goal is help foster the development and production of micro-scale devices to detect genetic disease such as cancer in an effort to drastically improve clinical treatment outcomes and patient survival. I also have a long-standing interest in science education and communicating science effectively. I hope to one day act as a public liaison in the scientific community in order to bridge the gap between understanding basic scientific research and it's relationship to human health and disease.

Seminar Title: The Formation & Fate of Oxidative DNA-protein cross-links (DPCs) Involving DNA Polymerase Beta in Mammalian Cells.

Description: Oxidative damage to DNA is linked to genomic instability, a key hallmark of cancer. Damage to the DNA backbone arising from attack by free radicals can promote the formation of secondary lesions known as, DNA-protein cross-links (DPC) both in vitro and in vivo. During attempted repair of oxidative lesions such as, 2-deoxyribonolactone (dL), enzymes bearing lyase activity such as, DNA polymerase Beta, become irreversibly bound at the site of the lesion, leading to DPC formation. Most studies involving this class of DPC has shed light on some important biochemical aspects of this reaction in vitro, however, little is known about their formation and fate in cells. Using biochemical assays and molecular biology techniques, the work to be discussed aim to address our understanding of dL-mediated DNA polymerase Beta DPC formation, their removal from the genome and their impact on cell survival. Because a significant fraction of neoplasms aberrantly express DNA polymerase Beta, shedding light on the mechanism of oxidative DPC formation may help researchers understand how such lesions contribute to genomic instability in humans. Furthermore, delineating the molecular details involved in DPC formation and processing could provide researchers with novel targets to combat neoplastic disease.


Quinones, J.L., Thapar, U., Fang, Q.M., Yu, K., Sobol, R.W., Demple, B. Enzyme Mechanism-Based, Oxidative DNA-Protein Crosslinks Formed with DNA Polymerase β in vivo. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. (PNAS) USA (2015) doi: 10.1073/pnas.1501101112.

Quinones, J.L., Carpi, A. An Investigation of the Kinetic Processes Influencing Mercury Emissions from Sand and Soil Samples of Varying Thickness. J. Environ. Qual. 40:1–6 (2011) doi:10.2134/jeq2010.0327.