Binyam Mogessie, Ph.D.
Binyam Mogessie is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology and Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences at Yale University.
Binyam was born and raised in Ethiopia and moved to Germany in 2004, where he studied biochemistry and cell biology at Jacobs University Bremen. He then moved to the UK for his PhD with Anne Straube, first at the Marie Curie Research Institute in Surrey and later at the Centre for Mechanochemical Cell Biology in Warwick, where he investigated the molecular mechanisms that organize the microtubule cytoskeleton during skeletal muscle differentiation and cell division. After receiving his PhD in cell biology from the University of London, he joined the laboratory of Melina Schuh in 2012 as a postdoc at the MRC-LMB in Cambridge (and later at the Max Planck Institute in Göttingen, Germany), where he discovered a function of the actin cytoskeleton in accurate chromosome segregation and the prevention of aneuploidy in mammalian eggs. In 2019, Binyam established his independent research laboratory as a Wellcome Trust and Royal Society Sir Henry Dale fellow and HFSP Young Investigator at the University of Bristol. He joined the Yale MCDB faculty in July 2022 where his lab continues mechanistic cell biology studies of female meiosis and reproductive longevity.
Meiotic chromosome segregation generates fertilizable eggs from progenitor oocytes. Chromosome segregation errors are remarkably common in oocytes and a leading cause of egg aneuploidies broadly associated with infertility, miscarriage, and birth-related genetic disorders. Oocyte aneuploidy increases almost exponentially with age and underlies poor pregnancy outcomes at advanced reproductive ages. A fundamental aim our research is to understand which cellular mechanisms safeguard female meiosis and how their age-related dysfunction impacts fertility. In the lab, we are applying advanced microscopy technologies in combination with targeted protein degradation methods to study meiosis in oocytes of various mammalian species including humans. Using this approach, we are uncovering how self-organization of the oocyte actin and microtubule cytoskeletons is coordinated in space and time for accurate chromosome segregation and genomic integrity. We are also developing key discovery-enabling methods such as live imaging assays of endogenous protein dynamics and localized protein disruption tools that will overcome major challenges in the female meiosis field. Our long-term vision is to explore outcomes of this research for development of next-generation fertility treatment technologies.