Antony M Jose

Associate Professor


Office Phone: 301.405.7028

Lab Phone: 301.405.9513

Lab: 2205 Bioscience Research Building

Office Address: 2136 Bioscience Research Building


Graduate Program Affiliations

  • BISI - BISI-Molecular & Cellular Biology (MOCB)


Research Interests


Cell codes perpetuate life

Life has diversified since its origin through bottleneck stages that separate successive generations. Each organism proceeds from the bottleneck stage, typically a single cell, with two distinct stores of information: the linear DNA sequence that is replicated during cell divisions, and the three-dimensional arrangement of molecules that dictates what is made using the DNA sequence and changes during development but returns to a similar configuration at the start of each generation. These two interdependent stores of information – one replicating with every cell division and the other cycling with a period of one generation – coevolve and together can be thought of as forming a cell code for making an organism. Understanding cell codes and how they are propagated during development such that they are recreated in a similar configuration at the start of each generation has implications for evolution and the origins of inherited diseases.


How is the expression pattern of a gene perpetuated? 

To understand how the cell code of an organism is set up, we need to ask questions about how a process is perpetuated. Our lab is using the simple worm C. elegans to understand how the expression pattern of a gene is perpetuated. Taking advantage of our recent ability to induce transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, i.e. modify non-genetic aspects of the cell code, our goal is to use reductionist, systems, and engineering approaches to address this question.

Another feature of the cell code is that it is capable of being divided equally as revealed by the existence of twins and by experimental manipulation in many organisms. Therefore, we are also interested in understanding the mechanisms that enable equal cell division and thus the symmetric partitioning of gene regulatory information between cells.

These studies will begin to reveal the logic of how the information required to build and perpetuate an animal is transmitted across generations. 


Recent Publications




Devanapally S, Allgood S, Jose AM. Mating can cause transgenerational gene silencing in Caenorhabditis elegansBioRxiv. Online Jun 11, 2017.





Jose AM. Replicating and cycling stores of information perpetuate life. BioEssays. In Press.



Raman P, Zaghab S, Traver EC, Jose AM. The double-stranded RNA binding protein RDE-4 can act cell autonomously during feeding RNAi in C. elegansNucleic Acids Research. 45(14):8463-73.


Choi YS, Edwards LO, DiBello A, Jose AM. Removing bias against short sequences enables northern blotting to better complement RNA-seq for the study of small RNAs. Nucleic Acids Research. 45(10):e87.


Marré J and Jose A. Inheritance of extracellular nutrition and information in Caenorhabditis elegansMolecular Reproduction & Development. 84(4):283.



Marré JA, Traver EC, Jose AM. Extracellular RNA is transported from one generation to the next in C. elegans. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA. 113(44):12496-501.


Le HH, Strauss B, Bloodgood M, Jose AM. Tissue homogeneity requires inhibition of unequal gene silencing during development. Journal of Cell Biology. 214(3): 319-331.


Blumenfeld AL, Jose AM. Reproducible features of small RNAs in C. elegans reveal NU RNAs and provide insights into 22G RNAs and 26G RNAs. RNA. 22:184-192.



Jose AM. Movement of regulatory RNA between animal cells. genesis. 53(7): 395-416.


Devanapally S, Ravikumar S, Jose AM. Double-stranded RNA made in C. elegans neurons can enter the germline and cause transgenerational gene silencing. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA. 112(7):2133-8.