JHU biomedical engineering primary faculty
Winston Timp, PhD
Assistant ProfessorOffice: Clark 118A
Lab: The Timp Lab
PhD, Electrical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2007)
MS. Electrical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2005)
BS, Biochemistry, University of Illinois at Urbana (2002)
BS, Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana (2002)
BS, Chemistry, University of Illinois at Urbana (2002)
BS, Electrical Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana (2001)
Epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in phenotype through a mechanism other than genetic sequence — e.g., DNA cytosine methylation, histone post-translational modifications, nucleosome positioning, and chromatin organization. Epigenetic signatures differ between somatic cells and stem cells, between different tissue types, and are dysregulated in cancer. The epigenetic state has a strong effect on how genes are regulated, but the mechanism for this regulation is still being explored.
The Timp Lab is focused on two areas: parsing the biophysical mechanisms of epigenetics on a single molecule basis and dissecting how epigenetics effects and is affected by signal transduction on a single cell basis via control of the cellular microenvironment. These two areas of research are synergistic; single molecule research is a bottom-up approach informing new targets to explore via FISH or immunofluorescence, or new signal pathways. The single cell approach will reveal new epigenetic patterns, which we can then explore using the single molecule toolset.
Timp W, Feinberg AP. Cancer as a dysregulated epigenome allowing cellular growth advantage at the expense of the host. Nature Reviews Cancer. 2013 Jul;13(7):497–510.
Kurz V, Nelson EM, Perry N, Timp W, Timp G. Epigenetic Memory Emerging from Integrated Transcription Bursts. Biophysical Journal. 2013 Sep 17;105(6):1526–1532.
Nelson, E.M., V. Kurz, J. Shim, W. Timp, G. Timp. 2012. Using a Nanopore for Single Molecule Detection and Single Cell Transfection. The Analyst 137: 3020–3027. doi:10.1039/C2AN35571J.
Timp, W., J. Comer, A. Aksimentiev. 2012. DNA Base-calling via nanopore sequencing using a Viterbi algorithm. Biophysical Journal 102, L37–L39.
McDonald, O. G., H. Wu, W. Timp, A. Doi, and A. P. Feinberg. 2011. Genome-scale epigenetic reprogramming during epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. Nature Structural & Molecular Biology 18 (8):867–74.
Hansen, K. D., W. Timp, H. C. Bravo, S. Sabunciyan, B. Langmead, O. G. McDonald, B. Wen, H. Wu, Y. Liu, D. Diep, E. Briem, K. Zhang, R. A. Irizarry, and A. P. Feinberg. 2011. Increased methylation variation in epigenetic domains across cancer types. Nature Genetics 43 (8):768–75.
Timp, W., U. M. Mirsaidov, Deqiang Wang, J. Comer, A. Aksimentiev, and G. Timp. 2010. Nanopore Sequencing: Electrical Measurements of the Code of Life. Nanotechnology, IEEE Transactions on 9 (3):281–294.
Mirsaidov, U., W. Timp, X. Zou, V. Dimitrov, K. Schulten, A. P. Feinberg, and G. Timp. 2009. Nanoelectromechanics of Methylated DNA in a Synthetic Nanopore. Biophysical Journal 96 (4):L32–L34.