Joseph Seimetz

Biochemistry Graduate Student

School of Molecular Cell Biology

B.S. Biochemistry - University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Started in Lab: December 2014

Funding: NIH Chemical Biology Training Program (2015-2017)
American Heart Association Pre-doc fellowship (2018-2020)


Chorghade S*, Seimetz J*, Emmons, RS, Yang J, Bresson SM, De Lisio M, Parise, G, Conrad NK and Kalsotra A (2017) Poly(A) tail length regulates PABPC1 expression to tune translation in the heart. eLIFE doi:10.7554/eLife.24139.
| * denotes equal authors

Liu DC, Seimetz J, Lee KY, Kalsotra A, Chung HJ, Lu H and Tsai NP (2017) Mdm2 mediates FMRP- and Gp1 mGluR-dependent protein translation and neural network activity. Hum. Mol. Genet

Skariah G, Seimetz J, Norsworthy M, Lannom MC, Kenny PJ, Elrakhawy M, Forsthoefel C, Drnevich J, Kalsotra A, Ceman S (2017) Mov10 in developing brain suppresses retroelements and regulates neuronal development and function.
BMC Biol. 15:54. doi: 10.1186/s12915-017-0387-1

Selvadurai K, Wang P, Seimetz J, Huang RH. (2014) Archaeal Elp3 catalyzes tRNA wobble uridine modification at C5 via a radical mechanism. Nature Chem. Biol. Oct;10(10):810-2. doi: 10.1038/nchembio.1610. Epub 2014 Aug 24.


Hi, I am Joe Seimetz, a graduate student in biochemistry at UIUC. I received my B.S. in biochemistry from UIUC in May 2014. As an undergraduate, I worked with Dr. Raven Huang for three years using crystallographic and biochemical methods to characterize RNA binding proteins.

Since I was a kid, I have been fascinated with biology and chemistry. The more I learned, the more I realized just how complex cells are and how little we understand. From this, I decided that I wanted to be a part of unraveling these complexities and using this knowledge to improve society in new and novel ways. This has brought me to Dr. Auinash Kalsotra’s lab where I study mRNA processing in the context of tissue development and disease; mRNA processing is what allows the cells in our body to perform diverse roles using distinct sets of proteins, all from exact same genome. More specifically, I study how poly(A) tail length and alternative polyadenylation tune protein synthesis in the heart to match the growth needs of cardiac cells during development and hypertrophy. To do this research I utilize cutting edge tools such as transgenic mouse models, RNA sequencing, bioinformatics, polysome profiling, ribosome profiling, fluorescence microscopy, along with traditional molecular biology and biochemical techniques.

If you see me in the lab with headphones in, I’m probably listening to a podcast that I’d be happy to discuss. When I’m not in the lab, I enjoy exploring the local food and craft beer scene with friends, cooking, seeing movies, and traveling.