Natalia I. Dmitrieva

National Institutes of Health, USA


Natalia I. Dmitrieva obtained her M.S. degree in biology in 1990 from St. Petersburg State University and the Ph.D. degree in physiology in 1996 from Sechenov Institute of Evolutionary Physiology and Biochemistry, St. Petersburg, Russia, for studies on regulation of water permeability by antidiuretic hormone vasopressin. She completed her postdoctoral studies at the Laboratory of Kidney and Electrolyte Metabolism of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, working on damages induced by high NaCl such as DNA breaks and proteins oxidation. She is currently a Staff Researcher at the Renal Cellular and Molecular Biology Section of Systems Biology Center, NHLBI, NIH, where she continues her research on cellular effects of high NaCl. Her studies showed that high NaCl induces numerous DNA breaks in renal inner medulla where high NaCl is constantly present as a result of urinary concentrating mechanism. The breaks persist as long as level of NaCl is elevated and are rapidly repaired when NaCl is lowered. Induction of DNA breaks by high NaCl is evolutionary conserved phenomenon. Thus, high NaCl increases DNA breaks in cultured cells, in C.elegans, and in cells of marine invertebrates that are constantly exposed to high salinity of marine water. Unique feature of high NaCl-induced DNA double-strand breaks is that their locations in genome are not random; they are predominantly located in areas of genome devoid of genes (gene deserts). Such location outside gene coding regions might explain why, in spite of the DNA breaks, cells survive and function normally for a long time in high NaCl. However, long exposure to high NaCl accelerates cellular senescence and aging. Her current research focuses on identifying mechanism of the DNA breaks induction by high NaCl, understanding how chromatin integrity is maintained despite the DNA breaks and how high NaCl induces cellular senescence and aging.

Biography Updated on 14 August 2012

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