Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Chemistry & Biochemistry

First Advisor

Amy E. Palmer

Second Advisor

Robert T. Batey

Third Advisor

Joel M. Kralj


In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, P-bodies play critical roles in the control of gene expression in localized cellular domains. Many P-bodies components contain intrinsically disordered regions (IDR). This thesis explores the hypothesis that the IDR of one P-body component Dhh1 plays a role in P-body assembly. To answer this question, an automated analysis pipeline was created to compare changes in the phenotypes of P-bodies in the full length Dhh1 protein and the Dhh1 protein without the IDR (d_IDR). I found that the IDR of Dhh1, though not necessary for Dhh1 recruitment to P-bodies, increases the number of P-bodies in each cell and decreases the relative concentration of P-bodies constituents. The IDR of Dhh1 was also found not to have an effect on P-bodies size. The results of these analyses support the original hypothesis that the IDR of Dhh1 assists in P-body assembly through promiscuous and synergistic interactions with other proteins found within the P-body. The automated analysis pipeline that I created was found to be accurate when compared to existing manual analysis methods and could be generalized to analyze the phenotypes of other cellular granules.

Included in

Biochemistry Commons