JCSMR School Seminar Series - Mechanisms of regulating gene expression via selective mRNA transport

Dr Vihandha Wickramasinghe, Head - RNA Biology and Cancer Laboratory, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne, VIC

Dr  Wickramasinghe's research interests lie in understanding the molecular basis of how messenger RNA (mRNA) is selectively processed and exported from the nucleus into the cytoplasm and how deregulation of these processes contributes to human cancer. He was awarded a Melbourne National Scholarship to undertake his undergraduate and honours degrees in Biomedical Science at the University of Melbourne. Following this, he was awarded a prestigious Medical Research Council pre-doctoral fellowship to undertake his PhD studies at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.

During his subsequent post-doctoral studies at the MRC Cancer Unit in Cambridge, he demonstrated for the first time that selective mRNA export from the nucleus can regulate a fundamental biological process, namely DNA repair. The RNA Biology and Cancer Laboratory aims to characterise novel mechanisms of regulating gene expression via selective mRNA transport and to use these insights to identify potential new therapeutic targets for the treatment of cancer.


VO Wickramasinghe* and AR Venkitaraman*. (2016). RNA processing and genome stability: cause and consequence. Molecular Cell, 61 (4): 496-505.

VO Wickramasinghe, M Gonzalez-Porta, D Perera, A Bartolozzi, CR Sibley, M Hallegger, J Ule, JC Marioni and AR Venkitaraman (2015). Regulation of constitutive and alternative mRNA splicing across the human transcriptome by PRPF8 is determined by 5’ splice site strength. Genome Biology, 16 (1): 201

VO Wickramasinghe* and RA Laskey*. (2015). Control of mammalian gene expression by selective mRNA export. Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology, 16 (7): 431-42

VO Wickramasinghe*, R Andrews, P Ellis, C Langford, JB Gurdon, M Stewart, AR Venkitaraman and RA Laskey. (2014). Selective nuclear export of specific classes of mRNA from mammalian nuclei is promoted by GANP. Nucleic Acids Research, 42 (8): 5059-5071

VO Wickramasinghe, JM Savill, S Chavali, AB Jonsdottir, E Rajendra, T Grüner, RA Laskey, MM Babu and AR Venkitaraman. (2013). Human inositol polyphosphate multikinase regulates transcript-selective nuclear mRNA export to preserve genome integrity. Molecular Cell, 51(6): 737-50

D Jani, S Lutz, E Hurt, RA Laskey, M Stewart and VO Wickramasinghe*. (2012). Functional and structural characterization of the mammalian TREX-2 complex that links transcription with nuclear messenger RNA export. Nucleic Acids Research, 40(10):4562-73

VO Wickramasinghe*, PIA McMurtrie, AD Mills, Y Takei, S Penrhyn-Lowe, Y Amagase, S Main, J Marr, M Stewart and RA Laskey (2010). mRNA export from mammalian cell nuclei is dependent on GANP. Current Biology, 20(1), 25-31.

Date & time

12–1pm 23 September 2016


The Finkel Letcure Theatre, The John Curtin School of Medical Research, Building 131 Garran Road, ANU


Host: Professor Ross Hannan


 Ms Jeanette Mill
 +61 2 6125 3732

Updated:  19 September 2018/Responsible Officer:  Director, JCSMR/Page Contact:  Web Manager