Molecular Biology

Faculty and Research Interests

Katrina F. Cooper, PhDKatrina Cooper PhD

Associate Professor
Science Center, Room 362
856 566-2887
Fax: 856 566-6291


University of Oxford, Great Britain
D. Phil. Biochemistry 1993

University of Manchester, Great Britain.
Hons. B. Sc. Microbiology 1989

Research Interests

The long-term goal of my research is to elucidate the mechanism by which a cell decides its fate in response to environmental cues. Misinterpretation of these signals can result in the cell choosing the incorrect fate, which, in turn, can lead to neoplasia, i.e. tumor formation. To study this in the laboratory, I use two model experimental systems, Saccharomyces cerevisiae (bakers yeast) and the mouse. The combination of using yeast and mammalian model systems is very powerful. Experiments performed in yeast commonly identify the molecular pathways that are triggered in response to stress. As many biological processes are highly conserved, the information gained in yeast often translates directly to mammalian pathways. Here the consequence to the whole animal of making these cell fate decisions can be studied. Significantly, the mouse model system is excellent in determining which cell fate decision can trigger tumor formation.

RELEVANT Publications

1) Cooper, K.F., M.J. Mallory, J.B. Smith and Strich, R. (1997) Stress and developmental regulation of the yeast C-type cyclin UME3. EMBO J., 16: 4665-4675. PMID: 9303311

2) Cooper, K.F., Mallory, M.J., and Strich, R. (1999) Oxidative stress-induced destruction of the yeast C type cyclin Ume3p requires the phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C (PLC1) and the 26S proteasome. Mol. Cell. Biol., 19: 3338-3348. PMID: 10207058

3) Cooper, K.F. and Strich, R. (1999) Functional analysis of the yeast C-type cyclin Ume3p and the RNA polymerase II holoenzyme interaction. Gene Expression, 8: 43-57, 1999. PMID: 10543730

4) Cooper, K.F., Egeland, D.E., Mallory, M.J., and Strich, R. (2000) Ama1p is a meiosis specific regulator of the anaphase promoting complex/cyclosome in yeast. P. N. A. S., 97: 14534-14553. PMID: 11114178

5) Cooper, K.F. and Strich, R. (2002) The yeast C-type cyclin Ume3p is required for the normal execution of Meiosis I. Eukaryotic Cell, I: 66-74. PMID: 12455972

6) Strich, R., Mallory, M.J., Jarnik, M. and Cooper, K.F. (2004) Cyclin B-cdk activity stimulates meiotic rereplication in budding yeast. Genetics. 167: 1621-6218. PMID: 15342503

7) McDonald, C.M, Cooper, K.F. and Winter E. (2005) The ama1-directed anaphase-promoting complex regulates the smk1 mitogen-activated protein kinase during meiosis in yeast. Genetics. 171: 901-11. PMID: 16079231

8) Krasley, E., Cooper K.F., Mallory, M.J., Dunbrack, R. and Strich R. (2006) Regulation of the Oxidative Stress Response Through Slt2p-Dependent Destruction of Cyclin C in S. cerevisiae. Genetics. 172: 1477-1486. PMID: 16387872

9) Mallory, M.J., Cooper, K. F. and Strich, R (2007). Meiosis-specific destruction of the Ume6p repressor by the Cdc20-directed APC/C. Molecular Cell. 27: 951-961. PMID: 17889668

10) Cooper, K. F., * Mallory, M.J., Guacci, V., Lowe, K and Strich, R (2009). Pds1p is Required for Meiotic Recombination and Prophase I Progression in S. cerevisiae. Genetics. 181: 65-79 (senior and 1st author). PMID: 17889668

11) Tan, G.S., Magurno, J. and Cooper K.F. (2010) Ama1p activated anaphase promoting complex regulates the destruction of Cdc20p during meiosis II. Mol Biol Cell. 22: 315-326 2011. PMID: 21118994

12) Cooper, K. F., Scarnati, M. S., Krasley, E., Mallory, M. J., Jin, C., Law, M. J. and Strich, R. (2012) Oxidative stress-induced nuclear to cytoplasmic relocalization is required for Not4-dependent cyclin C destruction. (2011) J.Cell Sci 125: 1015-1026. PMID: 22421358

13) Tan GS, Lewandowski R, Mallory MJ, Strich R, Cooper K.F. (2013) Mutually dependent degradation of Ama1p and Cdc20p terminates APC/C ubiquitin ligase activity at the completion of meiotic development in yeast. Cell Div. Jul 1;8(1):9. PMID: 23816140

14) Jin,C., Parshin, AK., Daly. I ., Strich, R and Cooper K.F (2013) The cell wall sensors Mtl1, Wsc1, Mid2 are required for stress-induced nuclear to cytoplasmic translocation of cyclin C and programmed cell death in yeast. Oxid Med Cell Longev Epub PMID: 24260614

15) Cooper, K. F, Khakhina, S,. Kim, S. K. and Strich, R. (2014) Stress-Induced Nuclear to Cytoplasmic Translocation of Cyclin C Promotes Mitochondrial Fission in Yeast. Dev Cell 28: 161–173. PMID: 24439911.

16) Jin, C., Strich, R. and Cooper, K.F. (2014) Slt2p phosphorylation induces cyclin C nuclear to cytoplasmic translocation in response to oxidative stress. Mol Biol Cell Epub Feb. 19: 2014; doi:10.1091/mbc.E13-09-0550


17). Wang K., Yan R., Cooper K.F. and Strich, R. (2015) Cyclin C mediates stress-induced mitochondrial fission and apoptosis. Mol. Biol. Cell. 26:1030-1043. PMID: 25609094

18) Jin. C. S., Kim S., Willis. S. and Cooper, K. F. (2015) A branched cell wall integrity MAP kinase pathway mediates cyclin C destruction and programmed cell death in yeast. Microbial Cell. 2:329-342. DOI: 10.15698/mic2015.09.226. Cover Issue.

Highlighted in Dev Cell, Volume 28, Issue 2, 112-114, 27 January 2014 “Cyclin C: An Inducer of Mitochondrial Division Hidden in the Nucleus” by Yoshihiro Adachi and Hiromi Sesaki.

Also was featured as Editors Choice in Science Signaling 2014, Vol.7 page-ec33 “Cyclin C Moves Out of the Nucleus” by VanHook, A.M.


1) Cooper, K. (2006) Rb, whi it’s not just for metazoans anymore. Oncogene Reviews 25: 5228–5232. PMID: 16936741

2) Cooper, K. F., and Strich, R. Cell Div. (2011) Meiotic control of the APC/C: similarities & differences from mitosis. Cell Div 6:16 (senior and 1st author). Cell Div 6: 16. PMID: 21806783


3. Strich, R, and Cooper, K. F. (2014) The dual role of cyclin C connects stress regulated gene expression to mitochondrial dynamics. Microbial Cel. 1:318-324. DOI: 10.15698/mic2014.10.169. Cover Issue

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