Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Michael Leffak, Ph.D. (Advisor); Kwang-Jin Cho, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Weiwen Long, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


We have previously documented our evidence of genetic instabilities at the (Pu/Py)78 and (ATTCT)47 sequences and our reasoning for identifying break-induced replication (BIR) as the mode of repair responsible for the mutations in the DNA flanking the unstable inserts. Now, as our lab investigates the protein mechanisms at play in the BIR pathway taking place at these sites, we are also expanding our knowledge of how this mechanism extends into the pathways responsible for forming extrachromosomal circular DNA (eccDNA) molecules. We have documented the phenomena posed as the driving factors for eccDNA formation in our systems containing (Pu/Py)78 and (ATTCT)47. Therefore, in this defense, we worked to uncover how STN1, COPS2, Pol and, generally, BIR function to produce eccDNAs in mammalian cells containing these unstable DNA sequences using inverse PCR (iPCR) to detect circular DNAs being generated in the genomic contents of these cells before and after knockdown of the proteins of interest.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Year Degree Awarded