Richard Gregory, PhD
Principal Investigator, Children's Hospital Boston
Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School
Dr. Gregory received a PhD from Cambridge University, UK in 2001 studying genomic imprinting at the Babraham Institute. His postdoctoral work was performed at the Fox Chase Cancer Center and the Wistar Institute, Philadelphia. Dr. Gregory’s postdoctoral research focused on mechanisms of miRNA biogenesis and function, and was supported by a Jane Coffin Childs Research Fellowship. He joined Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School as an Assistant Professor in 2006. He was named a 2008 Pew Scholar.
His laboratory’s research focus is on understanding the pathways of how small regulatory RNAs are generated, how they exert their gene regulatory function, their role in the self-renewal and pluripotency of embryonic stem cell (ES cells), and their relevance to human disease. RNA interference (RNAi) describes the recently identified phenomenon whereby small non-coding RNAs can silence gene expression. It is emerging that cells possess a wide repertoire of tiny regulatory RNAs that are critical for a variety of biological pathways and can repress genes via numerous mechanisms. For posttranscriptional gene silencing, microRNAs (miRNAs), and small inhibitory RNAs (siRNAs), function as guide molecules inducing mRNA degradation or translation repression. In mammals, hundreds of miRNAs have been identified, and have been implicated in controlling diverse developmental pathways. Indeed, recent predictions indicate that most human genes may be targeted by miRNAs.