Frank Uhlmann

Chromosome Segregation Laboratory

Aneuploidy, i.e. missing or supernumerary chromosomes, is a hallmark of malignant tumour progression. A large number of genes that orchestrate faithful chromosome segregation during mitotic cell divisions are tumour suppressors or turn into potent oncogenes if misregulated.

The aim of the Chromosome Segregation Laboratory is to investigate cellular mechanisms that safeguard accurate chromosome segregation. In particular, we are investigating the contribution of structural chromosomal proteins to sister chromatid cohesion and chromosome condensation, essential processes that ensure faithful segregation of the centimetre-long chromosomal DNA molecules within micrometre-sized cells.

A second topic of our research is the regulation of ordered mitotic progression by the cell division cycle machinery.

The budding yeast rDNA locus

The budding yeast rDNA locus, here visualized via a fluorescent rDNA binding protein, comprises ca. 500 μm of DNA. It is folded into a much more compact chromosome arm structure, to make chromosome segregation into daughter cells during cell division possible. Shown is how a regulator of the chromosomal cohesin complex, Wpl1, finetunes the chromosome condensation status. Scale bar, 5 μm.

Selected publications

Murayama Y, Samora CP, Kurokawa Y, Iwasaki H, Uhlmann F. Establishment of DNA-DNA interactions by the cohesin ring. Cell. 2018;172(3):465-77

Mariezcurrena A, Uhlmann F. Observation of DNA intertwining along authentic budding yeast chromosomes. Genes Dev. 2017;31(21):2151-61

Kakui Y, Rabinowitz A, Barry DJ, Uhlmann F. Condensin-mediated remodeling of the mitotic chromatin landscape. Nat. Genet. 2017;49(10):1553-7

Godfrey M, Touati SA, Kataria M, Jones A, Snijders AP, Uhlmann F. PP2ACdc55 phosphatase imposes ordered cell cycle phosphorylation by opposing threonine phosphorylation. Mol. Cell. 2017;65(3):393-402

Samora CP, Saksouk J, Goswami P, Wade BO, Singleton MR, Bates PA, Lengronne A, Costa A, Uhlmann F. Ctf4 links DNA replication with sister chromatid cohesion establishment by recruiting the Chl1 helicase to the replisome. Mol. Cell. 2016;63(3):371-84

Murayama Y, Uhlmann F. DNA entry into and exit out of the cohesin ring by an interlocking gate mechanism. Cell. 2015;163(7):1628-40

Cheng TM, Heeger S, Chaleil RA, Matthews N, Stewart A, Wright J, Lim C, Bates PA, Uhlmann F. A simple biophysical model emulates budding yeast chromosome condensation. eLIFE. 4;e05565

Frank Uhlmann
+44 (0)20 379 62059

  • Qualifications and history
  • 1997 PhD, University of Tübingen/ Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Germany/ USA
  • 1997 Postdoctoral Fellow, Research Institute of Molecular Pathology, Austria
  • 2000 Established lab at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund, UK (in 2002 the Imperial Cancer Research Fund became Cancer Research UK)
  • 2015 Group Leader, the Francis Crick Institute, London, UK