David Pincus

Assistant Professor
Research Summary
David Pincus is an Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology. The Pincus lab is located in the Center for Physics of Evolving Systems on the 5th floor of GCIS. The Pincus Lab studies cellular adaptation at three levels: cell biological mechanisms of adaptation to environmental stress, global principles of adaptation and resource allocation in complex environments, and the intersection of physiological stress response factors and evolutionary adaptation. David is trained in approaches in biochemistry, biophysics, genetics, genomics, and molecular, cell, computational, systems and synthetic biology. The lab uses budding yeast and cultured human cells as experimental models. Key project areas: 1) Quantitative cell biology of the heat shock response 2) Single-cell transcriptomics in complex stress environments
proteostasis, Hsf1, kinase, chaperone, Hsp70, Hsp40, Hsp90, Phosphorylation
  • UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, BA Molecular & Cell Biology 12/2004
  • UCSF, San Francisco, CA, PhD Biochemistry 09/2012
  • Whitehead Institute, Cambridge, MA, 09/2018
Biosciences Graduate Program Association
Awards & Honors
  • 2007 - 2010 Graduate Research Felloship NSF
  • 2013 - 2015 Stewart Trust Cancer Fellowship Alexander and Margaret Stewart Trust
  • 2013 - 2018 Early Independence Award (DP5) NIH Office of the Director
  1. Inducible transcriptional condensates drive 3D genome reorganization in the heat shock response. Mol Cell. 2022 11 17; 82(22):4386-4399.e7. View in: PubMed

  2. Primordial super-enhancers: heat shock-induced chromatin organization in yeast. Trends Cell Biol. 2021 10; 31(10):801-813. View in: PubMed

  3. Subcellular localization of the J-protein Sis1 regulates the heat shock response. J Cell Biol. 2021 01 04; 220(1). View in: PubMed

  4. Persistent Activation of mRNA Translation by Transient Hsp90 Inhibition. Cell Rep. 2020 Sep 08; 32(10):108149. View in: PubMed

  5. Persistent Activation of mRNA Translation by Transient Hsp90 Inhibition. Cell Rep. 2020 08 11; 32(6):108001. View in: PubMed

  6. Regulation of Hsf1 and the Heat Shock Response. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2020; 1243:41-50. View in: PubMed

  7. Multi-kinase control of environmental stress responsive transcription. PLoS One. 2020; 15(3):e0230246. View in: PubMed

  8. Strategies for Engineering and Rewiring Kinase Regulation. Trends Biochem Sci. 2020 03; 45(3):259-271. View in: PubMed

  9. m6A modification of a 3' UTR site reduces RME1 mRNA levels to promote meiosis. Nat Commun. 2019 07 30; 10(1):3414. View in: PubMed

  10. Proteotoxicity from aberrant ribosome biogenesis compromises cell fitness. Elife. 2019 03 07; 8. View in: PubMed

  11. Heat Shock Factor 1 Drives Intergenic Association of Its Target Gene Loci upon Heat Shock. Cell Rep. 2019 01 02; 26(1):18-28.e5. View in: PubMed

  12. Lipidomic Analysis of a-Synuclein Neurotoxicity Identifies Stearoyl CoA Desaturase as a Target for Parkinson Treatment. Mol Cell. 2019 03 07; 73(5):1001-1014.e8. View in: PubMed

  13. Engineering allosteric regulation in protein kinases. Sci Signal. 2018 11 06; 11(555). View in: PubMed

  14. Genetic and epigenetic determinants establish a continuum of Hsf1 occupancy and activity across the yeast genome. Mol Biol Cell. 2018 12 15; 29(26):3168-3182. View in: PubMed

  15. Hierarchical Organization Endows the Kinase Domain with Regulatory Plasticity. Cell Syst. 2018 10 24; 7(4):371-383.e4. View in: PubMed

  16. Chaperone AMPylation modulates aggregation and toxicity of neurodegenerative disease-associated polypeptides. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018 05 29; 115(22):E5008-E5017. View in: PubMed

  17. Hsf1 Phosphorylation Generates Cell-to-Cell Variation in Hsp90 Levels and Promotes Phenotypic Plasticity. Cell Rep. 2018 03 20; 22(12):3099-3106. View in: PubMed

  18. Translocon Declogger Ste24 Protects against IAPP Oligomer-Induced Proteotoxicity. Cell. 2018 03 22; 173(1):62-73.e9. View in: PubMed

  19. Defining the Essential Function of Yeast Hsf1 Reveals a Compact Transcriptional Program for Maintaining Eukaryotic Proteostasis. Mol Cell. 2018 02 01; 69(3):534. View in: PubMed

  20. Hsf1 and Hsp70 constitute a two-component feedback loop that regulates the yeast heat shock response. Elife. 2018 02 02; 7. View in: PubMed

  21. Serial Immunoprecipitation of 3xFLAG/V5-tagged Yeast Proteins to Identify Specific Interactions with Chaperone Proteins. Bio Protoc. 2017 Jun 20; 7(12). View in: PubMed

  22. An evolution-based strategy for engineering allosteric regulation. Phys Biol. 2017 04 28; 14(2):025002. View in: PubMed

  23. Unrestrained AMPylation targets cytosolic chaperones and activates the heat shock response. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2017 01 10; 114(2):E152-E160. View in: PubMed

  24. Dynamic control of Hsf1 during heat shock by a chaperone switch and phosphorylation. Elife. 2016 11 10; 5. View in: PubMed

  25. Size doesn't matter in the heat shock response. Curr Genet. 2017 May; 63(2):175-178. View in: PubMed

  26. Defining the Essential Function of Yeast Hsf1 Reveals a Compact Transcriptional Program for Maintaining Eukaryotic Proteostasis. Mol Cell. 2016 07 07; 63(1):60-71. View in: PubMed

  27. Specificity in endoplasmic reticulum-stress signaling in yeast entails a step-wise engagement of HAC1 mRNA to clusters of the stress sensor Ire1. Elife. 2014 Dec 30; 3:e05031. View in: PubMed

  28. tRNA thiolation links translation to stress responses in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Mol Biol Cell. 2015 Jan 15; 26(2):270-82. View in: PubMed

  29. Assigning quantitative function to post-translational modifications reveals multiple sites of phosphorylation that tune yeast pheromone signaling output. PLoS One. 2013; 8(3):e56544. View in: PubMed

  30. Formation of subnuclear foci is a unique spatial behavior of mating MAPKs during hyperosmotic stress. Cell Rep. 2013 Feb 21; 3(2):328-34. View in: PubMed

  31. Basic leucine zipper transcription factor Hac1 binds DNA in two distinct modes as revealed by microfluidic analyses. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Nov 06; 109(45):E3084-93. View in: PubMed

  32. Scaffold number in yeast signaling system sets tradeoff between system output and dynamic range. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Dec 13; 108(50):20265-70. View in: PubMed

  33. BiP binding to the ER-stress sensor Ire1 tunes the homeostatic behavior of the unfolded protein response. PLoS Biol. 2010 Jul 06; 8(7):e1000415. View in: PubMed

  34. Reagents for investigating MAPK signalling in model yeast species. Yeast. 2010 Jul; 27(7):423-30. View in: PubMed

  35. Messenger RNA targeting to endoplasmic reticulum stress signalling sites. Nature. 2009 Feb 05; 457(7230):736-40. View in: PubMed

  36. Negative feedback that improves information transmission in yeast signalling. Nature. 2008 Dec 11; 456(7223):755-61. View in: PubMed

  37. The genome of the choanoflagellate Monosiga brevicollis and the origin of metazoans. Nature. 2008 Feb 14; 451(7180):783-8. View in: PubMed