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We address fundamental questions in developmental biology: How are we made? How are cell identities defined and maintained in order to provide the right cell type at the right time for proper development? What are the central molecular players for cell-fate choice? Our main research efforts focus on some of the first differentiation decisions taken during embryonic stem cell commitment.
The Leeboratory approaches cell fate choice from multiple angles. We study epigenetics, RNA biology and signalling to pursue a holistic approach to understand differentiation. We use genetics and high-throughput methodology combined with systems biology approaches to delineate the molecular rules of cell-fate decision. Embryonic stem cells and various differentiation strategies are our main experimental model systems.
Martin performed his PhD thesis in the Wutz lab at the IMP in Vienna. From 2011 to 2015 he was a post-doc in the lab of Austin Smith at the Cambridge Stem Cell Institute. Since 2015 he is group leader and since 2021 Associate Professor at the Max Perutz Labs where the Leeboratory works on deciphering the molecular control of cell fate decisions.
In 2011, together with Anton Wutz, we reporter the first stable and fully pluripotent haploid mouse ES cell lines. This breakthrough discovery has since enabled a multitude of genetic screens and has also been instrumental in high resolution single cell based nuclear structures as well as the birth of monoparental mice.
In 2014 we utilized the potential of haploid ES cells in an insertional mutagenesis screen to identify genes that regulate the first cell fate decision in ES cell differentiation, the exit from pluripotency. We showed that haploid ES cells are a highly efficient platform for genetic screens in a developmentally relevant context.
NMD is required for timely cell fate transitions by fine-tuning gene expression and regulating translation.
Huth, Michelle; Santini, Laura; Galimberti, Elena; Ramesmayer, Julia; Titz-Teixeira, Fabian; Sehlke, Robert; Oberhuemer, Michael; Stummer, Sarah; Herzog, Veronika; Garmhausen, Marius; Romeike, Merrit; Chugunova, Anastasia; Leesch, Friederike; Holcik, Laurenz; Weipoltshammer, Klara; Lackner, Andreas; Schoefer, Christian; von Haeseler, Arndt; Buecker, Christa; Pauli, Andrea; Ameres, Stefan L; Smith, Austin; Beyer, Andreas; Leeb, Martin
Genomic imprinting in mouse blastocysts is predominantly associated with H3K27me3.
Santini, Laura; Halbritter, Florian; Titz-Teixeira, Fabian; Suzuki, Toru; Asami, Maki; Ma, Xiaoyan; Ramesmayer, Julia; Lackner, Andreas; Warr, Nick; Pauler, Florian; Hippenmeyer, Simon; Laue, Ernest; Farlik, Matthias; Bock, Christoph; Beyer, Andreas; Perry, Anthony C F; Leeb, Martin
Cooperative genetic networks drive embryonic stem cell transition from naïve to formative pluripotency.
Lackner, Andreas; Sehlke, Robert; Garmhausen, Marius; Giuseppe Stirparo, Giuliano; Huth, Michelle; Titz-Teixeira, Fabian; van der Lelij, Petra; Ramesmayer, Julia; Thomas, Henry F; Ralser, Meryem; Santini, Laura; Galimberti, Elena; Sarov, Mihail; Stewart, A Francis; Smith, Austin; Beyer, Andreas; Leeb, Martin
Genetic exploration of the exit from self-renewal using haploid embryonic stem cells.
Leeb, Martin; Dietmann, Sabine; Paramor, Maike; Niwa, Hitoshi; Smith, Austin
Derivation of haploid embryonic stem cells from mouse embryos.
Leeb, Martin; Wutz, Anton
Polycomb complexes act redundantly to repress genomic repeats and genes.
Leeb, Martin; Pasini, Diego; Novatchkova, Maria; Jaritz, Markus; Helin, Kristian; Wutz, Anton
The Leeb Group is supported through the "Vienna Research Groups for Young Investigators" program.
Mechanisms of endo-mesodermal lineage choice (P35637; 2022-2025)
Execution of cell fate choice by cooperative gene activities (I5958; cooperation with Prof. Andreas Beyer, CECAD Cologne; 2023-2026)
Regulation of ES cell differentiation by NMD (P 31334; 2019-2022)
Systems Level Analysis of ES Cell Differentiation (I 3786; 2019-2021)
Schroedinger return fellowship: "Mechanisms of ES cell differentiation"