Faculty & Research

Molecular Biology Faculty

Ileana M. Cristea

Professor of Molecular Biology

Ileana Cristea

Phone (609) 258-9417
locationLewis Thomas Lab, 210
dial_pad Lab (609) 258-9425
Faculty Assistant
Mary Gidaro
Phone (609) 258-8956


Research Focus

The research of our laboratory is at the interface between virology and proteomics. We are studying cellular mechanisms used in defense against viruses, as well as mechanisms used by viruses to inhibit or hijack host cell processes. For these studies, we use multidisciplinary approaches, integrating molecular virology, microscopy, mass spectrometry-based proteomics, and bioinformatics. We have developed a series of proteomics-based approaches for characterizing cellular processes occurring during the progression of viral infections, and we are exploring several areas of interest:

  • Dynamic regulation of host-virus protein-protein and protein-nucleic acid interactions during the progression of an infection
  • Mechanisms of sensing of pathogenic DNA within the nuclei of infected cells
  • Initiation and propagation of intrinsic and innate immune responses following infection with nuclear-replicating herpesviruses
  • Roles and regulation of human deacetylases (histone deacetylases - HDACs and sirtuins - SIRTs) during viral infections
  • Global remodeling of cellular organelles during the progression of viral infection
  • Developing targeted and large-scale proteomic tools for quantifying proteins, identifying protein interactions, determining the specificity of interactions, defining distinct protein complexes, and measuring the relative stability of interactions

Selected Publications

Greco TM, Guise AJ, Cristea IM. Determining the Composition and Stability of Protein Complexes Using an Integrated Label-Free and Stable Isotope Labeling Strategy. Methods Mol Biol. [PubMed - in process]

Waldron L, Steimle JD, ... Cristea IM, Moskowitz IP, Conlon FL. (2016) The Cardiac TBX5 Interactome Reveals a Chromatin Remodeling Network Essential for Cardiac Septation. Dev Cell. 36(3):262-75. Pubmed

Song R, Koyuncu OO, Greco TM, Diner BA, Cristea IM, Enquist LW. (2016) Two Modes of the Axonal Interferon Response Limit Alphaherpesvirus Neuroinvasion. MBio. 7(1). Pubmed

Lum KK, Cristea IM. (2016) Proteomic approaches to uncovering virus-host protein interactions during the progression of viral infection. Expert Rev Proteomics. [Epub ahead of print]

Greco TM, Cristea IM. (2016) The Biochemical Evolution of Protein Complexes. Trends Biochem Sci. 41(1):4-6. Pubmed

Giguère SS, Guise AJ, Jean Beltran PM1, ... Kong J, Cristea IM. (2015) The proteomic profile of deleted in breast cancer 1 (DBC1) interactions points to a multi-faceted regulation of gene expression. Mol Cell Proteomics. [Epub ahead of print]

Budayeva HG, Rowland EA, Cristea IM. (2015) The intricate roles of mammalian sirtuins in defense against viral pathogens. J Virol. [Epub ahead of print]

Lin KW, McDonald KR, Guise AJ, Chan A, Cristea IM, Zakian VA. (2015) Proteomics of yeast telomerase identified Cdc48-Npl4-Ufd1 and Ufd4 as regulators of Est1 and telomere length. Nat Commun.  6:8290. Pubmed

Diner BA, Cristea IM. (2015) Blowing off steam: Virus inhibition of cGAS DNA sensing.  Cell Host Microbe. 18(3):270-2. Pubmed

Diner BA, Lum KK, Cristea IM. (2015) The emerging role of nuclear viral DNA sensors. J Biol Chem.  [Epub ahead of print]

Orzalli MH, Broekema NM,..., Elde NC, Cristea IM, Knipe DM. (2015) cGAS-mediated stabilization of IFI16 promotes innate signaling during herpes simplex virus infection. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A.  10: 10732. PubMed

Koyuncu OO, Song R, Greco TM, Cristea IM, Enquist LW. (2015) The number of alphaherpesvirus particles infecting axons and the axonal protein repertoire determines the outcome of neuronal infection. MBio. 6. pii: e00276-15. Pubmed

Rowles DL, Tsai YC, Greco TM, Lin AE, Li M, Yeh J, Cristea IM. (2015) The DNA methyltransferase DNMT3A associates with viral proteins and impacts HSV-1 infection. Proteomics. [Epub ahead of print]

Crow MS, Javitt A, Cristea IM. (2015) A proteomics perspective on viral DNA sensors in host defense and viral immune evasion mechanisms. J Mol Biol. 427:1995-2012.  Pubmed

Diner BA, Lum KK, Javitt A, Cristea IM. (2015) Interactions of the antiviral factor IFI16 mediate immune signaling and herpes simplex virus-1 immunosuppression. Mol Cell Proteomics. [Epub ahead of print]

Diner BA, Li T, Greco TM, Crow MS, Fuesler JA, Wang J, Cristea IM. (2015) The functional interactome of PYHIN immune regulators reveals IFIX is a sensor of viral DNA. Mol Syst Biol. 11:787. Pubmed

Mathias RA, Guise AJ, Cristea IM. (2015) Post-translational modifications regulate class IIa histone deacetylase function in health and disease. Mol Cell Proteomics. 14:456-470 Pubmed

Koyuncu E, Budayeva HG, Miteva YV,...Cristea IM. (2014) Sirtuins are evolutionarily conserved viral restriction factors. MBio. 5. pii: e02249-14. Pubmed

Mathias RA, Greco TM, Oberstein A,...Cristea IM. (2014) Sirtuin 4 is a lipoamidase regulating pyruvate dehydrogenase complex activity. Cell. 159: 1615-25. Pubmed

Castellana M, Wilson MZ, Xu Y, Joshi P, Cristea IM, Rabinowitz JD, Gitai Z, Wingreen NS. (2014) Enzyme clustering accelerates processing of intermediates through metabolic channeling. Nat Biotechnol. 32: 1011-8. Pubmed

Jean Beltran PM, Cristea IM. (2014) The life cycle and pathogenesis of human cytomegalovirus infection: lessons from proteomics. Expert Rev Proteomics. 11: 697-711. Pubmed

Budayeva HG, Cristea IM. (2014) A mass spectrometry view of stable and transient protein interactions. Adv Exp Med Biol. 806: 263-82. Pubmed

Guise AJ, Mathias RA, Rowland EA, Yu F, Cristea IM. (2014) Probing phosphorylation-dependent protein interactions within functional domains of histone deacetylase 5 (HDAC5). Proteomics. 14: 2156-66. Pubmed

Li T, Chen J, Cristea IM. (2013) Human cytomegalovirus tegument protein pUL83 inhibits IFI16-mediated DNA sensing for immune evasion. Cell Host Microbe. 14: 591-99. Pubmed

Miteva YV, Cristea IM. (2013) A proteomic perspective of SIRT6 phosphorylation and interactions, and their dependence on its catalytic activity. Mol Cell Proteomics. 13: 168-83.  Pubmed

Tsai YC, Greco TM, Cristea IM. (2013) SIRT7 plays a role in ribosome biogenesis and protein synthesis. Mol Cell Proteomics. 13: 73-83. Pubmed

Rowles DL, Terhune SS, Cristea IM. (2013) Discovery of host-viral protein complexes during infection. Methods Mol Biol. 1064: 43-70. Pubmed

Lin AE, Greco TM, Dohner K, Sodeik B, Cristea IM. (2013) A proteomic perspective of inbuilt viral protein regulation: pUL46 viral tegument protein is targeted for degradation by the viral ICP0 protein during HSV-1 infection. Mol Cell Proteomics. 12: 3237-52. Pubmed

Guise AJ, Budayeva HG, Diner BA, Cristea IM. (2013) Histone ceacetylases in Herpesvirus replication and virus-stimulated host defense. Viruses. 5: 1607-32. Pubmed

Kratchmarov R, Kramer T, Greco TM,...Cristea IM, Enquist LW. (2013) Glycoproteins gE and gI are required for efficient KIF1A-dependent anterograde axonal transport of alphaherpesvirus particles in neurons. J Virol. 87: 9431-40. Pubmed

Joshi P, Greco TM, Guise AJ,...Cristea IM. (2013) The functional interactome landscape of the human histone deacetylase family. Mol Syst Biol. 9: 672. Pubmed

Kramer T, Greco TM, Taylor MP, Ambrosini AE, Cristea IM, Enquist LW. (2012) Kinesin-3 mediates axonal sorting and directional transport of alphaherpesvirus particles in neurons. Cell Host Microbe. 12: 806-14. Pubmed

Miteva YV, Budayeva HG, Cristea IM. (2012) Proteomics-based methods for discovery, quantification, and validation of protein-protein interactions. Anal Chem. 85: 749-68. Pubmed

Greco TM, Miteva Y, Conlon FL, Cristea IM. (2012) Complementary proteomic analysis of protein complexes. Methods Mol Biol. 917: 391-407. Pubmed

Guise AJ, Greco TM, Zhang IY, Yu F, Cristea IM. (2012) Aurora B-dependent regulation of class IIa histone deacetylases by mitotic nuclear localization signal phosphorylation. Mol Cell Proteomics. 11: 1220-29. Pubmed

Gudleski-O'Regan N, Greco TM, Cristea IM, Shenk T. (2012) Increased expression of LDL receptor-related protein 1 during human cytomegalovirus infection reduces virion cholesterol and infectivity. Cell Host Microbe. 12: 86-96. Pubmed

Li T, Diner BA, Chen J, Cristea IM. (2012) Acetylation modulates cellular distribution and DNA sensing ability of interferon-inducible protein IFI16. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 109: 10558-63. PubMed

Tsai YC, Greco TM, Boonmee A, Miteva Y, Cristea IM (2012) Functional proteomics establishes the interaction of SIRT7 with chromatin remodeling complexes and expands its role in regulation of RNA polymerase I transcription. Mol Cell Proteomics. 11: 60-76. PubMed

Sabouri N, McDonald KR, Webb CJ, Cristea IM, Zakian VA. (2012) DNA replication through hard-to-replicate sites, including both highly transcribed RNA Pol II and Pol III genes, requires the S. pombe Pfh1 helicase. Genes Dev. 26: 581-93. PubMed

Goodarzi H, Najafabadi HS, Oikonomou P,...Cristea IM, Tavazoie S (2012) Systematic discovery of structural elements governing stability of mammalian messenger RNAs.  Nature. 485: 264-68. PubMed

Cowles CE, Li Y, Semmelhack MF, Cristea IM, Silhavy TJ. (2011) The free and bound forms of Lpp occupy distinct subcellular locations in Escherichia coli. Mol Microbiol. 79: 1168-81. PubMed

Kramer T, Greco TM, Enquist LW, Cristea IM. J Virol. (2011) Proteomic characterization of Pseudorabies virus extracellular virions. J Virol. 85: 6427-41. PubMed

Blanco MA, Aleckovic M, Hua Y,...Cristea IM, Kang Y. (2011) Identification of Staphylococcal nuclease domain containing 1 (SND1) as a Metadherin-interacting protein with metastasis-promoting functions. J Biol Chem. 286: 19982-92. PubMed

Cowles CE, Li Y, Semmelhack MF, Cristea IM, Silhavy TJ. (2011) The free and bound forms of Lpp occupy distinct subcellular locations in Escherichia coli. Mol Microbiol. 79: 1168-81. PubMed

Greco TM, Yu F, Guise AJ, Cristea IM. (2010) Nuclear import of histone deacetylase 5 by requisite nuclear localization signal phosphorylation. Mol Cell Proteomics. 10: M110.004317. PubMed

Moorman NJ, Sharon-Friling R, Shenk T, Cristea IM. (2010) A targeted spatial-temporal proteomics approach implicates multiple cellular trafficking pathways in human cytomegalovirus virion maturation. Mol Cell Proteomics. 9: 851-60. PubMed

Terhune SS, Moorman NJ, Cristea IM,...Shenk T. (2010) Human cytomegalovirus UL29/28 protein interacts with components of the NuRD complex which promote accumulation of immediate-early RNA. PLoS Pathog. 6: e1000965. PubMed

Cristea IM, Moorman NJ, Terhune SS,...Shenk T. (2010) Human cytomegalovirus pUL83 stimulates activity of the viral immediate-early promoter through its interaction with the cellular IFI16 protein. J Virol. 84: 7803-14. PubMed

Carabetta VJ, Silhavy TJ, Cristea IM. (2010) The response regulator SprE (RssB) is required for maintaining PAP I-degradosome association during stationary phase. J Bacteriol. 192: 3713-21. PubMed

Cristea IM, Rozjabek H, Molloy KR,...Macdonald MR. (2010) Host factors associated with the Sindbis virus RNA-dependent RNA polymerase: a role for G3BP1 and G3BP2 in virus replication. J Virol. 84: 6720-32. PubMed

Carabetta VJ, Li T, Shakya A, Greco TM, Cristea IM. (2010) Integrating Lys-N proteolysis and N-terminal guanidination for improved fragmentation and relative quantification of singly-charged ions. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom. 21: 1050-60. PubMed

Goldberg AD, Banaszynski LA, Noh KM,...Cristea IM,...Allis CD. (2010) Distinct factors control histone variant H3.3 localization at specific genomic regions. Cell 140: 678-91. PubMed

Moorman NJ, Sharon-Friling R, Shenk T, Cristea IM. (2009) A targeted spatial-temporal proteomic approach implicates multiple cellular trafficking pathways in human cytomegalovirus virion maturation. Mol Cell Proteomics. 9: 851-60. PubMed

Luo Y, Li T, Yu F, Kramer T, Cristea IM. (2009) Resolving the composition of protein complexes using a MALDI LTQ orbitrap. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom. 21: 34-46. PubMed

Selimi F, Cristea IM, Heller E, Chait BT, Heintz N. (2009) Proteomic studies of a single CNS synapse type: the parallel fiber/purkinje cell synapse. PLoS Biol. 7: 948-57. PubMed

Moorman NJ, Cristea IM, Terhune SS, Rout MP, Chait BT, Shenk T. (2008) Human cytomegalovirus protein UL38 inhibits host cell stress responses by antagonizing the tuberous sclerosis protein complex. Cell Host Microbe. 3: 253-62. PubMed

Glavy JS, Krutchinsky A, Cristea IM,...Chait BT. (2007) Cell-cycle dependent phosphorylation of the nuclear pore Nup107-160 subcomplex. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 104: 3811-16. PubMed

Warwood S, Mohammed S, Cristea IM, Evans C, Whetton AD, Gaskell SJ. (2006) Guanidination chemistry for qualitative and quantitative proteomics. Rapid Commun Mass Spectrom. 20: 3245-56. PubMed

Cristea IM, Carroll JW, Rout MP, Rice CM, Chait BT, MacDonald MR. (2006) Tracking and elucidating alphavirus-host protein interactions. J Biol Chem. 281: 30269-78. PubMed

Wang QJ, Ding Y, Kohtz DS,...Cristea IM,...Yue Z. (2006) Induction of autophagy in axonal dystrophy and degeneration. J Neurosci. 26: 8057-68. PubMed

Cristea IM, Williams R, Chait BT, Rout MP. (2005) Fluorescent proteins as proteomic probes. Mol Cell Proteom. 4: 1933-41. PubMed

Cristea IM, Degli Esposti M. (2004) Membrane lipids and cell death: an overview. Chem Phys Lipids. 129: 133-60. PubMed

Sorice M, Circella A, Cristea IM,...Degli Esposti M. (2004) Cardiolipin and its metabolites move from mitochondria to other cellular membranes during death receptor-mediated apoptosis. Cell Death Differ. 11: 1133-45. PubMed

Meneses-lorente G, Guest P, Lawrence J,...Cristea I,...Watt A. (2004) A proteomic investigation of drug induced steatosis in rat liver. Chem Res Toxicol. 17: 205-12.

Cristea IM, Gaskell SJ, Whetton DW. (2004) Proteomics techniques and their application to hematology. Blood 103: 3624-34. PubMed

Degli Esposti M, Cristea IM, Gaskell SJ, Nakao Y, Dive C. (2003) Pro-apoptotic Bid binds to monolysocardiolipin, a new molecular connection between mitochondrial membranes and cell death. Cell Death Differ. 10: 1300-09. PubMed

Fairlamb IJS, Dickinson JM, Cristea IM. (2001) Influence of palladium(II) complexes on the cycloaddition of α-bromoalkyl ketenes to cyclopentadiene. Tetrahedron. 57: 2237.

Fairlamb IJS, Dickinson JM, Cristea IM. (2000) Palladium-catalysed [π2a + π2s] of α-bromoalkyl ketenes to cyclopentadiene. Tetrahedron Lett. 41: 3739.

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