Our laboratory focuses on non-canonical DNA structures, G-quadruplexes, i-motifs, and tandem repeats. Such sequences are found at telomeres and oncogene promoters, among other regions. Small molecule ligands strongly affect fold and stability of non-canonical DNA and may act as anticancer therapeutics. We strive to determine the structural details of DNA and DNA-ligand complexes and understand the reasons behind structural diversity of DNA. Our favorite techniques include X-ray crystallography, UV-vis and fluorescence spectroscopies, circular dichroism (CD), fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET), gel electrophoresis, and synthetic work.
If you are interested in working in the Yatsunyk lab:
send Liliya an email at lyatsun1
stop by her office in SC 286 or the lab SC 285
Lab News 2022
The Yatsunyk Lab welcomes two new members- Harrison Kim and Paul Seth
Congratulations to Dana, Erin, and Liz on the publication of their recent article titled "The First Crystal Structures of Hybrid and Parallel Four-Tetrad Intramolecular G-Quadruplexes" Nucleic Acids Res., 2022, 50, 2959-2972.
Charlotte Pohl, Kevin Li, Erin Chen, Sara Yun, and David Ye presented at the Sigma Xi poster session at Swarthmore on September 30th and October 1st.
Dana Bessio and Liliya Yatsunyk presented talks at the International Conference on Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines, ICPP-11, which was run virtually from June 28th to July 3rd.
The lab welcomes Kailey Martin, our new research assistant, and Shawn Pfeil, an associate Professor of Physics at West Chester University.
Six students (Kevin Li, Charlotte Pohl, Zahara Martinez, Tamanaa Atrafi, Sara Yun, and David Ye) conducted research in person in the Yatlab over the summer. We have managed to solve the phase probelm for iHRAS and THM-RHPS4 projects and collect 2.3 A data for Oligo10-NMM project.
Liliya, Erin, and Kevin gave talks at the ACS Spring 2021 Virtual Meeting and Exposition. Liliya presented "Structure of T. thermophila telomeric DNA alone and with N-methylmesoporphyrin IX, NMM" on April 5th, Erin presented "Elucidating the structure of a four-repeat Satellite III DNA sequence” on April 7th, and Kevin presented "Water networks in G-quadruplexes" on April 14th.
Dana gave a poster presentation at the meeting, "Biophysical and structural characterization of Tetrahymena thermophila G-Quadruplexes alone and in complex with N-methyl mesoporphyrin IX."
The lab welcomed in the spring new students: Charlotte Pohl, Sara Yun, Tamanaa Atrafi, David Ye, and Zahara Martinez.