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ZFIN ID: ZDB-LAB-210514-1
Vertebrate Development and Regeneration Lab
PI/Director: Bessa, Jose
Contact Person: Bessa, Jose
Phone: +351 226 074 900
Line Designation: iis


The Vertebrate Development and Regeneration group studies the mechanisms of cis-transcriptional regulation of genes and how mutations on non-coding cis-transcriptional regulatory sequences might impact in the development of some human diseases, in particular diabetes and pancreatic cancer. To achieve this, the VDR lab uses genomic strategies to identify non-coding cis-transcriptional regulatory sequences and perform genetic functional assays in zebrafish to evaluate the function of these sequences.

Cabezas-Sainz, Pablo Post-Doc Galhardo, Mafalda Post-Doc perrod, chiara Post-Doc
Amorim, João Graduate Student Duque, Marta Graduate Student Eufrásio, Ana Graduate Student
Ferreira, Fábio Graduate Student Silva, Victor Graduate Student Teixeira, Joana Graduate Student
Marques, Joana Research Staff

Eufrásio, A., Perrod, C., Ferreira, F.J., Duque, M., Galhardo, M., Bessa, J. (2020) In vivo Reporter Assays Uncover Changes in Enhancer Activity Caused by Type 2 Diabetes Associated SNPs. Diabetes. 69(12):2794-2805
Amorim, J.P., Gali-Macedo, A., Marcelino, H., Bordeira-Carriço, R., Naranjo, S., Rivero-Gil, S., Teixeira, J., Galhardo, M., Marques, J., Bessa, J. (2020) A Conserved Notochord Enhancer Controls Pancreas Development in Vertebrates. Cell Reports. 32:107862
Seixas, A.I., Loureiro, J.R., Costa, C., Ordóñez-Ugalde, A., Marcelino, H., Oliveira, C.L., Loureiro, J.L., Dhingra, A., Brandão, E., Cruz, V.T., Timóteo, A., Quintáns, B., Rouleau, G.A., Rizzu, P., Carracedo, Á., Bessa, J., Heutink, P., Sequeiros, J., Sobrido, M.J., Coutinho, P., Silveira, I. (2017) A Pentanucleotide ATTTC Repeat Insertion in the Non-coding Region of DAB1, Mapping to SCA37, Causes Spinocerebellar Ataxia. American journal of human genetics. 101:87-103
Fernández-Miñán, A., Bessa, J., Tena, J.J., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L. (2016) Assay for transposase-accessible chromatin and circularized chromosome conformation capture, two methods to explore the regulatory landscapes of genes in zebrafish. Methods in cell biology. 135:413-30
Cebola, I., Rodríguez-Seguí, S.A., Cho, C.H., Bessa, J., Rovira, M., Luengo, M., Chhatriwala, M., Berry, A., Ponsa-Cobas, J., Maestro, M.A., Jennings, R.E., Pasquali, L., Morán, I., Castro, N., Hanley, N.A., Gomez-Skarmeta, J.L., Vallier, L., Ferrer, J. (2015) TEAD and YAP regulate the enhancer network of human embryonic pancreatic progenitors. Nature cell biology. 17:615-26
Ariza-Cosano, A., Bensimon-Brito, A., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L., Bessa, J. (2015) sox21a directs lateral line patterning by modulating FGF signaling. Developmental Neurobiology. 75(1):80-92
Spieler, D., Kaffe, M., Knauf, F., Bessa, J., Tena, J.J., Giesert, F., Schormair, B., Tilch, E., Lee, H., Horsch, M., Czamara, D., Karbalai, N., von Toerne, C., Waldenberger, M., Gieger, C., Lichtner, P., Claussnitzer, M., Naumann, R., Müller-Myhsok, B., Torres, M., Garrett, L., Rozman, J., Klingenspor, M., Gailus-Durner, V., Fuchs, H., Hrabě de Angelis, M., Beckers, J., Holter, S.M., Meitinger, T., Hauck, S.M., Laumen, H., Wurst, W., Casares, F., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L., Winkelmann, J. (2014) Restless legs syndrome-associated intronic common variant in Meis1 alters enhancer function in the developing telencephalon. Genome research. 24:592-603
Bessa, J., Luengo, M., Rivero-Gil, S., Ariza-Cosano, A., Maia, A.H., Ruiz-Ruano, F.J., Caballero, P., Naranjo, S., Carvajal, J.J., and Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L. (2014) A mobile insulator system to detect and disrupt cis-regulatory landscapes in vertebrates. Genome research. 24(3):487-95
Regadas, I., Matos, M.R., Monteiro, F.A., Gomez-Skarmeta, J.L., Lima, D., Bessa, J., Casares, F., and Reguenga, C. (2013) Several Cis-regulatory Elements Control mRNA Stability, Translation Efficiency, and Expression Pattern of Prrxl1 (Paired Related Homeobox Protein-like 1). The Journal of biological chemistry. 288(51):36285-301
Ariza-Cosano, A., Visel, A., Pennacchio, L.A., Fraser, H.B., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L., Irimia, M., and Bessa, J. (2012) Differences in enhancer activity in mouse and zebrafish reporter assays are often associated with changes in gene expression. BMC Genomics. 13(1):713
Royo, J.L., Bessa, J., Hidalgo, C., Fernández-Miñán, A., Tena, J.J., Roncero, Y., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L., and Casares, F. (2012) Identification and Analysis of Conserved cis-Regulatory Regions of the MEIS1 Gene. PLoS One. 7(3):e33617
Bessa, J., Tena, J.J., de la Calle-Mustienes, E., Fernández-Miñán, A., Naranjo, S., Fernández, A., Montoliu, L., Akalin, A., Lenhard, B., Casares, F., and Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L. (2009) Zebrafish enhancer detection (ZED) vector: A new tool to facilitate transgenesis and the functional analysis of cis-regulatory regions in zebrafish. Developmental dynamics : an official publication of the American Association of Anatomists. 238(9):2409-2417
Bessa, J., Tavares, M.J., Santos, J., Kikuta, H., Laplante, M., Becker, T.S., Gómez-Skarmeta, J.L., and Casares, F. (2008) meis1 regulates cyclin D1 and c-myc expression, and controls the proliferation of the multipotent cells in the early developing zebrafish eye. Development (Cambridge, England). 135(5):799-803