Aziz Aboobaker

Associate Professor of Genetics

Tutor in Biological Sciences, Lady Margaret Hall


Research Interests

My research program looks to leverage the planarian model system to study basic questions about how tissue regeneration is orchestrated and the features of stem cell biology that facilitate this. Furthermore, I believe we can use planarians to study the molecular mechanisms related to both aging and cancer. Highly regenerative animals solve the regeneration problem using different  cellular solutions, includng the use of pluripotent stem cells, lineage committed adult stem cells and dedifferentiation of tissue specific cells that regain potency. We are investigating some of these in appropriate animals  to see if they can provide further insight into the relationship between regeneration, stem cells and ageing. 






Selected Publications

  • Solana J, Gamberi C, Mihaylova Y, Grosswendt S, Chen C, Lasko P, Rajewsky N, Aboobaker AA. The CCR4-NOT Complex Mediates Deadenylation and Degradation o Stem Cell mRNAs and Promotes Planarian Stem Cell Differentiation. PLoS Genetics 2013; 9(12):e1004003. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1004003.

  • Blassberg RA, Felix DA, Tejada-Romero B, Aboobaker AA. PBX/extradenticle is required to re-establish axial structures and polarity during planarian regeneration. Development. 2013;140(4):730-9. doi: 10.1242/dev.082982.

  • Mihaylova Y, Aboobaker AA. What is it about 'eye of newt'? Genome Biol. 2013 20;14(2):106.

  • Kao D, Felix D, Aboobaker A. The planarian regeneration transcriptome reveals a shared but temporally shifted regulatory program between opposing head and tail scenarios. BMC Genomics. 2013 Nov 16;14:797. doi: 10.1186/1471-2164-14-797.

  • Aboobaker AA, Kao D. A lack of commitment for over 500 million years: conserved animal stem cell pluripotency. EMBO J. 2012 Jun 13;31(12):2747-9. doi:10.1038/emboj.2012.131.

  • González-Estévez C, Felix DA, Smith MD, Paps J, Morley SJ, James V, Sharp TV, Aboobaker AA. SMG-1 and mTORC1 act antagonistically to regulate response to injury and growth in planarians. PLoS Genet. 2012;8(3):e1002619. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1002619.

  • Tan TC, Rahman R, Jaber-Hijazi F, Felix DA, Chen C, Louis EJ, Aboobaker A. Telomere maintenance and telomerase activity are differentially regulated in asexual and sexual worms. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012;109(11):4209-14. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1118885109.

  • Aboobaker AA. Planarian stem cells: a simple paradigm for regeneration. Trends Cell Biol. 2011;21(5):304-11. doi: 10.1016/j.tcb.2011.01.005.