Bioinformatics & Systems Biology

Bioinformatics & Systems Biology Experts

Roel Schaaper

Developmental Biology
Institut Pasteur de Bangui

Roel Schaaper


he is heads the Mechanisms of Mutation Group within the Genome Integrity and Structural Biology Laboratory.The Mechanisms of Mutation group studies the detailed mechanisms by which mutations occur using the bacterium E. coli as a model system. Mutations may arise from a multitude of sources, which include errors of DNA replication, multiple DNA damage pathways that corrupt the DNA coding potential, the action of a variety of DNA repair pathways (both error-free and error-prone), certain recombinational events, mobile DNA element insertions, and others. It is important to realize that virtually all these pathways are genetically 'controlled', meaning that within each pathway sets of genes are functioning to reduce (although sometimes increase) the likelihood of mutation. For this reason, a genetic approach focused on isolating and investigating strains with altered mutation rates has proven productive. Many E. coli mutator mutants, which have a higher mutation rate than the wild-type strain, have been identified, and their study has led to the characterization of defined mutation-avoidance systems.

Research Interest

Sources of mutations Mechanisms of DNA replication fidelity Base selection, proofreading, mismatch repair Mutator and antimutator mechanisms Role of dNTP precursors in replication fidelity

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