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Sarah E. Hall

Sarah E. Hall

Assistant Professor
Department of Biology

340 Life Sciences Complex

Research and Teaching Interests

My primary research interest is how environmental experiences early in development can result in altered adult phenotypes, such as changes in behavior or physiology. Environmental experiences in utero or immediately after birth have been linked to various adult diseases in humans, such as metabolic and mental disorders. Although programmed changes in gene expression via epigenetic factors are hypothesized to regulate experience-dependent phenotypes, the mechanisms regulating the establishment and maintenance of these gene expression changes until adulthood are largely uncharacterized. My lab uses the animal model organism C. elegans and a variety of genetic, imaging, bioinformatic, behavioral, and molecular biology techniques to investigate the mechanisms of environmental programming of gene expression and its impact on adult phenotypes. Currently, my research focus is how animals use endogenous RNAi pathways to regulate gene expression and chromatin states in response to early environmental and developmental experiences.


  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Biology and National Center of Behavioral Genomics, Brandeis University (2006-2012)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Chicago (2004-2006)
  • Ph.D., Committee on Genetics, University of Chicago (2004)
  • B.S., Biochemistry and Genetics, Texas A&M University (1998)


  • BIO 400/600: Epigenetic Regulation of Gene Expression
  • BIO 435: Genetics Laboratory

Selected Publications

  • S.E. Hall*, M. Beverly*, C. Russ, C. Nusbaum, P. Sengupta. (2010) A cellular memory of developmental history generates phenotypic diversity in C. elegans. Current Biology. 20(2):149-55. (*equal authorship)
  • S.E. Hall*, G.-w. Chirn, N.C. Lau*, P. Sengupta. (2013) RNAi pathways contribute to developmental history-dependent phenotypic plasticity in C. elegans. RNA. 19(3): 306-19. (*corresponding authors)
  • M.C. Ow, N.C. Lau, S.E. Hall. (2014) Small RNA library cloning procedure for deep sequencing of specific endogenous siRNA classes in Caenorhabditis elegans. Methods in Molecular Biology 1173: 59-70.