James Bamburg - ProfessorPh.D., University of WisconsinThe cytoskeleton and neurodegenerative diseaseRole of the actin cytoskeleton in neuronal growth and regeneration, pathfinding, and in neurodegenerative diseases, especially Alzheimer disease. Signal transduction mechanisms controlling actin filament dynamics and cell behavior.
Chaoping Chen - Associate ProfessorPh.D., Purdue UniversityMolecular and Cell Biology of Retrovirus Assembly and BuddingHIV-1 protease autoprocessing mechanism and drug discovery
Robert Cohen - ProfessorPh.D., University of California at BerkeleyRecognition and metabolism of polyubiquitin protein modificationsMolecular recognition and protein-protein interactions as applied to ubiquitin biochemistry and ubiquitin-proteasome mediated protein degradation.
Jennifer DeLuca - Associate ProfessorPh.D., University of California, Santa BarbaraMechanisms of Mitotic Chromosome SegregationOur research focuses on understanding how accurate chromosome segregation is achieved in mitosis. We are analyzing the molecular architecture of the kinetochore-microtubule interface in vertebrate cells and studying how proteins and protein complexes at this interface drive and regulate chromosome movements.
Santiago Di Pietro - Associate ProfessorPh.D., University of Buenos AiresMolecular Mechanisms of Intracellular Protein TransportThe goal of this laboratory is to understand the molecular bases of human diseases that affect the biogenesis of intracellular organelles as well as the endocytic process.
Jeffrey Hansen - ProfessorPh.D., University of Wisconsin-MadisonHigher Order Chromatin Structure and Chromatin Architectural ProteinsOur research is focused on elucidating the structure/function relationships of the chromatin fiber. My laboratory has pioneered the use of analytical ultracentrifugation and quantitative agarose gel electrophoresis to yield unique information about the secondary and tertiary structures of chromatin fibers, and the architectural chromatin binding proteins that modulate these structures in solution.
P. Shing Ho - ProfessorPh.D., Northwestern UniversityNucleic acid structure and function; Biomolecular halogen bondsThe research interests in our laboratory focus on the structures and structural gymnastics of nucleic acids. More recently, we have been developing both nucleic acid and protein model systems to characterize a set of interactions called halogen bonds, which contribute significantly to the specificity and affinity of large classes of halogenated ligands used as inhibitors and as drugs. We apply crystallographic, molecular modeling, and physical biochemical approaches to study these problems.
Paul Laybourn - ProfessorPh.D., University of California, DavisImproving student learning outcomes through active learning approaches and engagment through research and socio-scientific issues.My research centers on infusing active learning approaches in teaching cell biology and biochemistry and developing and testing ways of engaging students in the course concepts and big ideas through undergraduate research experiences and application to socio-scientific issues.
Steven Markus - Assistant ProfessorPh.D., New York University Medical CenterMolecular Motors and Cell DivisionThe research in our lab is focused on how various molecules conspire to assemble and orient the mitotic spindle apparatus prior to cell division. We pay particularly close attention to various classes of molecular motors -- nano-sized ATP-powered machines -- and how they are regulated to perform their myriad functions during cell division.
Brian McNaughton - Associate Professor of Chemistry, and Biochemistry & Molecular BiologyPh.D., University of RochesterMacromolecular engineering, evolution, and discoveryThe use of engineering, high-throughput screening, and evolution to expand the scope and utility of proteins and assembled protein nanoreagents in catalysis, drug discovery, and intracellular drug delivery.
Jennifer Nyborg - ProfessorPh.D., University of California, RiversideTranscriptional Deregulation in Leukemia CellsDuring the last several years, the human T-cell leukemia virus type I (HTLV-I) has become increasingly recognized as an important cause for public health concern throughout the world. HTLV-I is the causative agent of a variety of clinical diseases, including an aggressive and fatal cancer called adult T-cell leukemia, and a neurological disorder that is clinically very similar to multiple sclerosis. A large body of evidence suggests that the clinical manifestations of HTLV-I infection occur as a consequence of a virally-encoded protein called Tax. My laboratory focuses on defining the intracellular consequences of Tax expression in the infected human cell, with emphasis on the Tax-dependent events that lead to malignant transformation.
Erin Osborne Nishimura - Assistant ProfessorPh.D., University of California, BerkeleyGene expression in developing embryosMy lab is interested in how mRNA transcripts are regulated at the single-cell and sub-cellular levels in developing embryos. We use a combination of experimental and computational approaches in the animal model C. elegans to examine the mechanisms and consequences of mRNA regulation.
Olve Peersen - ProfessorPh.D., Yale UniversityRNA dependent RNA polymerases and viral replication complexesThe picornaviruses are a family of small positive sense single stranded RNA viruses that cause a wide range of diseases in humans and animals. These include the rhinoviruses that cause the common cold and poliovirus, the prototypical member of this family. We are interested in understanding the molecular details of picornaviral replication and are using structural biology and biophysical techniques to determine the structure of viral proteins and study their interactions.
Jessica Prenni - Joint Faculty, Associate Professor, Director Of Research Core Facilities, Director of Proteomics & Metabolomics FacilityPh.D., University of ColoradoMass Spectrometry Based Proteomics and MetabolomicsProteomics and Metabolomics are fields of scientific study which combine techniques in purification and separation, mass spectrometry and bioinformatics. In our lab we utilize these tools for the identification and characterization of proteins and small molecules in a variety of biological systems.
Eric Ross - Associate Professor & Associate Chair for Graduate StudiesPh.D., Mayo Graduate SchoolYeast prions as a model for amyloid diseasesNumerous diseases including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and transmissible spongiform encephalopathies are associated with protein misfolding into ordered aggregates, called amyloid fibrils. We are using yeast prions as a model system for examining the causes and consequences of amyloid fibril formation.
Tom Santangelo - Associate ProfessorPh.D., Cornell UniversityMechanisms and regulation of archaeal transcriptionMembers of the Archaea often occupy unique, harsh, and ever-changing biological niches. These changing environments necessitate precise and timely regulation of gene expression. Our laboratory focuses on the regulation of transcription, from a global perspective to a detailed structure-function analysis of the archaeal RNA polymerase. Many Archaea can also produce bio-hydrogen and our laboratory is focused on a rational metabolic-engineering effort to generate strains with altered hydrogen production levels.
Christopher Snow - Assistant Professor of Chemical and Biological EngineeringPh.D., Stanford UniversityNanomaterials, Physical, Biomolecular, and Theoretical ChemistryComputational design, simulation, and experimental validation of new enzymes, and crystalline biomolecular assemblies. We convert porous protein crystals into “3D molecular pegboards” for the controlled assembly of nanoparticles, enzymes, fluorescent proteins, oligonucleotides, and other functional molecules.
Laurie Stargell - Professor & Associate Chair of Undergraduate StudiesPh.D., University of RochesterMechanisms of Gene ExpressionTranscription initiation by RNA polymerase II involves a highly regulated series of events dependent upon many protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions. By combining yeast genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, and biophysical techniques, we are using a multi-faceted approach to understand the functions of the transcription machinery in the chromatin context of living cells.
Tim Stasevich - Assistant ProfessorPh.D., University of MarylandRegulation of eukaryotic gene expression by post-translational modificationsWe study how post-translational modifications to chromatin and the transcription machinery contribute to eukaryotic gene expression. These marks have traditionally been difficult to study in vivo because they change throughout the lifetime of a protein. This makes them especially hard to specifically label, track, and quantify. My lab is pioneering new optical, genetic, and biophysical techniques to overcome this challenge and see first hand how specific sets of modifications alter the transcriptional output of single copy genes in single living cells.
Michael Tamkun - Joint Faculty, Professor Of PhysiologyPh.D., University of Washington, SeattleRegulation of Muscle Electrical Excitability at Both the Cellular and Molecular LevelsThe long-term objective of the Tamkun laboratory is to understand the regulation of muscle electrical excitability at both the cellular and molecular levels. Research in the lab revolves around five general themes: (1) cloning of new ion channels from cardiac and vascular muscle (2) identification of channel domains involved in protein-protein interactions, (3) examination of the signaling mechanisms/cellular processes that control ion channel function and tissue/cell-specific expression, ( 4) characterization of mechanisms responsible for channel cell surface localization, and (5) elucidation of the physiological role that a given channel plays within a particular tissue.
Tingting Yao - Associate ProfessorPh.D., University of IowaRegulation of Gene Expression and Chromatin Dynamics by Ubiquitin Conjugation & DeconjugationOur lab studies the interface between the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway and transcriptional regulation. Modification of components of the transcription machinery by ubiquitin can serve as a regulatory switch that both activate and limit gene expression. We are using a variety of biochemical and genetic approaches to define the molecular mechanisms that underlie these seemingly opposite processes.