All of our DNA, or genetic code, is stored like wound-up string in our cells' chromosomes. The two ends of a chromosome consist of short DNA sequences that are repeated many times. These sequences, called telomeres, protect the ends of the chromosomes. Carnegie's own Barbara McClintock, one of the first scientists to study telomeres, discovered something different about the DNA at the end of chromosomes in corn, and realized it was a unique sequence that created a “cap.” Since then, scientists have made a lot of progress in understanding the function of these telomeres, how they are created, and how they relate to cell health and aging.Two telomere research experts will shed light on the mysteries of telomeres and chromosomes, and how they relate to human health and disease.
Dr. Carol Greider: Daniel Nathans Professor and Director of the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine; Nobel Laureate
Dr. Joseph Gall: Staff Scientist, Department of Embryology, Carnegie Institutionf or Science; Lasker Award recipient