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May 2020

RNA Society 2020

The RNA Society holds an Annual Meeting during May/June and this year’s conference was scheduled from May 26-31, 2020 at Vancouver BC. Manny was selected to speak at the conference but unfortunately, due to the COVID pandemic, the meeting was cancelled. Nonetheless, with much thanks to the organizers (Ling-Ling Chen, Michaela Frye, Alain Laederach, Oliver Muehlemann, Stephen Rader, and Sarah Woodson), the talks and poster presentations were made available to all RNA Society Members for online viewing as pre-recorded videos or posters.



April 2020

Dean’s Faculty Fellow

Dr. Manny Ascano was awarded in the inaugural year of the Dean’s Faculty Fellows program, which recognizes the efforts of early-stage faculty that demonstrate a strong track record of scientific accomplishments!


May 2019

Congratulations to Sam Lisy and Robert Mann for their selection as NIH training grant recipients!

Robert and Sam were each selected as T32 graduate trainees of the Chemical-Biology Interface (VCBI) and the Cellular, Biochemical and Molecular Sciences (CBMS) Training Programs at Vanderbilt, respectively. Sam seeks to identify and characterize the natural targets of the IFIT RNA-binding protein family, a set of RBPs that are highly unregulated during interferon stimulation of cells. Robert aims to investigate the interplay between viral RNA structure and its impact on host-protein association.


October 2018

Katie Rothamel selected as Vanderbilt Prize Student Scholar!

A huge congratulations to Katie Rothamel who was recently selected as the Vanderbilt Prize Student Scholar. This award recognizes her scholarly efforts and accomplishments. As part of her award, she will be mentored by Dr. Lynne Maquat from the Center for RNA Biology at the University of Rochester School of Medicine.


March 2018

Congratulations to Sarah Arcos for being selected to present her work at the 2018 RNA Society Meeting at Berkeley

Sarah’s abstract was selected for an oral presentation at the 2018 RNA Society Meeting at Berkeley, California. She will be discussing hers and Dr. Byungil Kim’s latest efforts on the development of VIR-CLASP – a novel chemical biology approach to interrogate viral-host interactions during the earliest stages of viral infection.


May 2016

Congratulations to Katherine Rothamel and Sarah Arcos for their selection as NIH training grant recipients!

Katie and Sarah were each selected as T32 graduate trainees of the Chemical-Biology Interface (VCBI) and the Chemical Biology of Infectious Disease (CBID) Training Programs at Vanderbilt, respectively. Sarah aims to understand viral-host interactions with specific focus on the role of N6-methyladenosine modified (m6A) RNA-binding proteins as post-transcriptional regulators during viral infection. Katie’s research focuses on characterizing the direct regulatory impact of the RNA-binding protein ELAVL1 during acute periods of innate immune activation.


August 2016

Congratulations to the lab for being awarded our first NIH grant!

The NIH-MIRA R35 (RFA-GM-16-003) grant is entitled: Deciphering post-transcriptional gene regulatory networks in cellular stress and innate immunity.

The grant will allow us to pursue the following major biological questions:

1)How do RNA-binding proteins regulate gene expression of their targets during an innate immune response?

2)What is the nature and impact of RNA methylation on mRNAs upon interferon/cGAMP stimulation? And how do such changes affect RBP assembly and function?

3) How are the genomes of RNA viruses deployed during the early stages of infection, and what host- or viral-encoded RNA-binding proteins facilitate this process?

4) What are the regulatory co-factors required for the activating or repressing cGAS-STING signaling? and can we identify small molecule compounds for the development of experimental probes and pre-therapeutic scaffolds?