Lea Harrington, Ph.D.
- Principal Investigator, Telomere Length Homeostasis and Genomic Instability research unit, IRIC
- Professor, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Université de Montréal
- Visiting Professor, School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh
T + 514-343-6729
Research topic and relevance
Lea Harrington and her colleagues pursue the mechanisms by which chromosome ends, telomeres, are maintained and protected from degradation and recombination. The activity of an enzyme responsible for new telomere addition in most eukaryotes, telomerase, is increased in many cancers and conversely is decreased in many somatic tissues. Since critically short telomeres that elicit a DNA damage response are incompatible with cell viability, the regulation of telomerase activity and dosage is thus a critical determinant of normal and cancer cell proliferation.