Suzanne Deschenes, Ph.D.

Suzanne M. Deschênes, Ph.D.

Director, Thomas Moore Honors Program

Areas of Specialization: Genetics, Cell Biology, Molecular Biology

Degrees and Certifications

    • Post-Doctoral Associate, 1997-2001, Oregon Health & Sciences University, Molecular & Medical Genetics, Portland, OR, Laboratory of R. Michael Liskay, Ph.D.
    • Ph.D., 1997, Cell and Molecular Biology, University of Pennsylvania
    • A.B., 1990, Biology, College of the Holy Cross

    Affiliations:

    • Beta Beta Beta Biology Honor Society
    • Phi Beta Kappa
    • Genetics Society of America
    • Environmental Mutagenesis Society

Teaching Responsibilities

Research Interests & Grants

    Dr. Deschênes’ research interests focus on delineating the role of DNA mismatch repair (MMR) in protecting cells against DNA damage induced by environmental mutagens. MMR is an essential DNA repair system used by almost all species to maintain low baseline levels of mutations arising from natural biological processes inside cells.  Bacteria are an excellent model system for mutagenesis studies; excellent assays already exist for detecting mutations and measuring their frequencies, and their MMR functions have been extensively characterized. One mutagen of interest in Dr. Deschenes’ lab is the processed meat preservative sodium nitrite. Other areas of interest include exploring how MMR and other DNA repair pathways protect local aquatic bacterial and/or invertebrate populations from DNA damage induced by environmental pollutants such as metals.

    GRANTS

    • Sacred Heart University Research and Creativity Grant (2008-2009)                                            
    • Sacred Heart University Academics for Creative Teaching Grant (2006-2007)
    • Sacred Heart University Research and Creativity Grant (2004-2005)                           
    • Sacred Heart University Research and Creativity Grant (2003-2004)          

Honors, Awards & Fellowships

    • NIH National Research Service Award - Postdoctoral Fellowship (1998-2001)                     
    • Recipient of NIH Cell & Molecular Biology Training Grant Award (1990-1992)   
    • Crompton Gold Medal (best biology research paper), College of the Holy Cross (1990)                   
    • New England Consortium for Undergraduate Science Education Fellowship (1989)

Publications and Presentations

    View all Publications

    RESEARCH PUBLICATIONS

    Erdeniz, N., Nguyen, M., Deschênes, S.M., and Liskay, R.M. (2007) Mutations affecting a putative MutLa endonuclease motif impact multiple DNA mismatch repair functions.  DNA Repair 6:1463-1470.

    Deschênes, S.M., Tomer, G., Nguyen, M., Erdeniz, N., Juba, N.C., Sepúlveda, N., Pisani, J.E., and Liskay, R.M. (2007) The E705K mutation in hPMS2 exerts recessive, not dominant, effects on mismatch repair. Cancer Letters 249:148-156.

    VanSlyke, J. K., Deschênes, S. M., and Musil, L. S. (2000) Intracellular transport, assembly, and degradation of wild-type and disease-linked mutant gap junction proteins.  Mol. Biol. Cell 11:1933-46.

     Deschênes, S. M., Walcott, J. L., Wexler, T. L., Scherer, S. S., and Fischbeck, K. H. (1997) Altered trafficking of mutant Cx32. J. Neurosci. 17:9077-9084.

    Hoffmann, G. R., Deschênes, S. M., Manyin, T. A., and Fuchs, R. P. P. (1996) Mutagenicity of acridines in a reversion assay based on tetracycline resistance in plasmid pBR322 in Escherichia coli. Mut. Research 35:33-43.

    Scherer, S. S., Deschênes, S. M., Xu, Y., Grinspan, J. B., Fischbeck, K. H., and Paul, D. L. (1995) Connexin32 is a myelin-related protein in the PNS and CNS. J. Neuroscience  15:8281-8294.

    Deschênes, S. M., Puck, J. M., Dutra, A. S., Somberg, R. L., Felsburg, P. J., and Henthorn, P. S. (1994) Comparative mapping of canine and human proximal Xq and genetic analysis of canine X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency. Genomics 23:62-68.

    Puck, J. M., Deschênes, S. M., Porter, J. C., Dutra, A. S., Brown, C. J., Willard, H. F., and Henthorn, P. S. (1993) The interleukin-2 receptor g chain maps to Xq13.1 and is mutated in X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency, SCIDX1. Hum. Mol. Genet. 2:1099-1104.

    BOOKS AND REVIEWS

    Buermeyer, A. B., Deschênes, S. M., Baker, S. M., and Liskay, R. M. (1999) Mammalian DNA mismatch repair.  Annu. Rev. Genet. 33:533-64 (first two authors made equal contributions).

    Scherer, S. S., Bone, L.J., Deschênes, S. M., Abel, A., Balice-Gordon, R. J., and Fischbeck , K. H. (1999) The role of the gap junction protein connexin32 in the pathogenesis of X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. Novartis Found Symp. 219:175-85; discussion 185-7.

    Bone, L. J., Deschênes, S. M., Balice-Gordon, R. J., Fischbeck, K. H., and Scherer, S. S. (1997) Connexin32 and X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. Neurobiol. Disease 4:221-230.

    Fischbeck, K. H., Deschênes, S. M., Bone, L. J., and Scherer, S. S. (1997) Connexin32 and X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.  In:  Cold Spring Harbor Symposia on Quantitative Biology, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, pp.673-677.

    Scherer, S. S., Bone, L. J., Deschênes, S. M., Fischbeck, K.H., and Balice-Gordon, R. (1997) The role of the gap junction protein connexin32 in the myelin sheath.  In:  Cell Biology and Pathology of Myelin:  Evolving Biological Concepts andTherapeutic Approaches.  Plenum Press , pp. 83-102.

    Deschênes, S. M., Bone, L. J., Fischbeck, K. H., and Scherer, S. S. (1996) Connexin32 and X-Linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease.  In: Gap Junctions in the Nervous System, D. C. Spray and R. Dermetziel, eds., R. G. Landes Co., pp. 213-227.

    PRESENTATIONS

    Bartholomew, K., Deschênes, S. M., Gopalakrishnan, H., and Danaher, R. Development and implementation of an Interdisciplinary Laboratory Activity Project:  Determining mutation rate using Luria-Delbrück fluctuation analysis. Genetics 2010: Model Organisms to Human Biology, Boston, MA, June 12-15, 2010 (poster).

    Deschênes, S. M., Williams, K., and Mastriano, S. Genetic characterization of the role of DNA mismatch repair in protecting E. coli against A:T à G:C mutations induced by sodium nitrite.  Genetics 2010: Model Organisms to Human Biology, Boston, MA, June 12-15, 2010 (poster).

    Deschênes, S. M. Genetic characterization of the role of bacterial DNA mismatch repair in sodium nitrite mutagenesis. Annual Environmental Mutagenesis Society Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, October 20-24, 2007 (poster).

    Deschênes, S. M., Nguyen, M., Erdeniz, N., Tomer, G. and Liskay, R. M. Characterization of a putative dominant allele of human PMS2.  American Society for Microbiology International Conference on DNA Repair and Mutagenesis, Bermuda, 2004 (accepted and published abstract).

    Deschênes, S. M. and Liskay, R. M.  Characterization of a putative dominant-negative human PMS2 mutation in mouse embryonic stem cells. Mouse Colorectal Cancer conference, Bar Harbor, Maine, 2000 (oral presentation).

    Deschênes, S. M., Van Patten, C., and Liskay, R.M.  Analysis of a putative dominant-negative hPMS2 mutation in cultured mouse cells.  Keystone Symposia on Molecular Mechanisms in DNA Replication and Recombination, Taos, New Mexico, 1999 (poster).

    Buermeyer, A. B., Deschênes, S. M., Wilson-Van Patten, C. and Liskay, R. M. Requirement for Mlh1 and Pms2 in mismatch repair-dependent DNA damage surveillance.  American Society for Microbiology Conference on DNA Repair and Mutagenesis, Hilton Head, South Carolina, 1999 (poster).

    Deschênes, S. M. Altered trafficking of mutant Cx32. Oligodendroctye Interest Group,  Wistar Institute, Philadelphia, 1997.

    Deschênes, S. M., Spray, D. C., Bone, L. J., Scherer, S. S., and Fischbeck, K. H. X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMTX):  A model for studying the role of gap junctions in peripheral nerve.  2nd World Congress of Cellular and Molecular Biology, Ottawa, Canada, 1996 (oral presentation).

    Deschênes, S. M., Spray, D. C., and Fischbeck, K. H. (1996) Pathophysiology of connexin32 (Cx32) mutations in X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMTX). Molec. Biol. Cell 7:461a (poster).

    Deschênes, S. M., Scherer, S. S., Paulson, H., and Fischbeck, K. H. Localization and  developmental regulation of connexin32 in peripheral and central nervous systems. Gap  Junction Conference, Ile des Embiez, France, 1995. 

    Scherer, S. S., Deschênes, S. M., Fischbeck, K., and Paul, D.  Connexin32 is expressed by myelinating Schwann cells. Peripheral Nerve Society Mtg., St. Paul, Minnesota, 1994. 

    Deschênes, S. M., Henthorn, P. S., Porter, J. C., Brown, C. J., Willard, H. F., and Puck, J. M. Mutations in IL2RG result in X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency.  Philadelphia Genetics Group Meeting, Philadelphia, 1993.                

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