Biomolecular Chemistry Department
Mechanisms of membrane trafficking; live cell imaging techniques
5214a Biochemistry Building
420 Henry Mall
Madison, WI 53706
Membrane Biology & Protein Trafficking; Developmental Biology & Regenerative Medicine; Cancer Biology
All eukaryotic cells contain an elaborate membrane system necessary for the transport and compartmentalization of various proteins and lipids. This architecture permits numerous biochemical and signaling processes to occur simultaneously within specialized organelles. While the core machinery necessary to direct vesicle movement has been largely defined, the regulatory mechanisms that modulate membrane trafficking remain poorly understood. In particular, we are interested in determining how the fates of membrane-associated proteins are regulated by developmental cues. Failure to respond efficiently to such signals can result in a variety of disease states including cancer, neurodegeneration, and diabetes. By combining high-resolution fluorescence microscopy, functional genomics approaches, and in vitro biochemistry, we have been using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), transgenic rats, and human induced pluripotent stem cells to identify critical components necessary for membrane reorganization during development and differentiation.