Date of Award

Spring 4-27-2014

First Advisor

Dr. Jim Lissemore

Second Advisor

Dr. Erin Johnson


Atherosclerosis is a cardiovascular disease caused by a chronic inflammatory response in the cells lining blood vessels, vascular endothelial cells. In these cells, a network of interacting proteins regulates inflammation. One of these proteins, PRMT5, regulates the inflammatory response by methylating other proteins involved in inflammation. For PRMT5 to carry out its function, it must first oligomerize with itself and various other proteins. In this study, I determined whether mutations to specific PRMT5 methylation sites affect its ability to oligomerize. By expressing PRMT5 in HEK293 cells and studying the effects of adding a chemical cross-linking agent, DMS, I was able to determine whether mutations to PRMT5 had an effect on cross-linking. My results show that post-translational modifications are required at specific sites in PRMT5 in order for successful oligomerization to occur.