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Tracy Clement

Assistant Professor
Department of Veterinary Physiology & Pharmacology
College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX 77843-4466

Summary

My laboratory uses an integrative approach to elucidate the molecular basis of cyto/nucleo morphogenesis in the spermatid, called spermiogenesis.  This is among the most drastic cellular reorganizations and is critical for both male fertility and high fidelity transmission of genetic and epigenetic information to the next generation for healthy offspring.  We seek to elucidate structural and regulatory processes involved in this transformation to understand the molecular underpinnings of cytoskeletal and chromatin remodeling in normal and disrupted spermiogenesis. The laboratory takes advantage of molecular and genetic tools in mouse models including transgenesis, gene knock out studies, and genomic and proteomic expression analyses, advanced imaging technologies for morphological and live tissue imaging, and protein expression and in vitro molecular biochemical approaches such as actin dynamics assays.

Current Projects

The laboratory currently focuses on the mechanistic role of actin related proteins (ARPs) in spermiogenesis as a model to elucidated molecular mechanisms of ARPs in specialized cellular restructuring events.  Two basic requirements in multicellular organisms for adapting tissue specific and specialized functions are cellular morphogenesis and regulation of chromatin dynamics.  Essential to both of these processes is the ARP family.  ARPs have important roles in actin dynamics for cell shaping, polarity, organelle localization, and intracellular transport, and roles in chromatin dynamics for regulation of DNA repair, transcription, and epigenetic control.  Investigation of this protein family continues to lend novel insights into regulation of highly conserved cellular and nuclear morphogenetic processes.  Continued investigation of ARPs in multicellular organisms is required to understand the morphogenesis of specialized cell types and implications for health and disease.  The Clement lab is investigating ARP functions in the uniquely specialized morphogenesis of the spermatid using in vitro biochemical, in vivo developmental, and tissue explant models.  The central goal is to elucidate molecular mechanisms essential for cellular morphogenesis and chromatin regulation with implications for the male germline and production of healthy offspring

Teaching and Mentorship

Graduate education is a bridgeway to many careers in academia, industry, government, and more.  As a Graduate Faculty educator for the Biomedical Sciences, Genetics, and Toxicology programs at Texas A&M, I am committed to training the next generation of research scientists.

Its never to early to explore your interests in research!  Undergraduate research experiances are a great way to complement your education at Texas A&M, gaining hands-on experiance and exploring what it means to be a research scientist, while planning for your future career goals.

For more information on opportunities in the Clement lab, contact me at tclement@cvm.tamu.edu