Cell Biology @ Penn

Cytoskeleton, Motility, and Adhesion


Secretory lysosomes (lytic granules) traveling along microtubules towards the MTOC in activated natural killer cells. Shown is a confocal image of GFP-alpha-tubulin-transduced natural killer cells with LysoTrackerred-dyedlyticgranules.

A highly interactive group of investigators are using interdisciplinary techniques to investigate the biology of cell migration, adhesion, intracellular transport, chromosome segregation, cell division, mechanisms of molecular motor function, smooth, cardiac and skeletal muscle contraction, muscle physiology and development. Strengths of the Penn faculty include investigating the mechanisms of force production, coordination and regulation of intracellular transport, regulation of cell-matrix and cell-cell adhesion and behavior by the physical and chemical properties of cellular molecules and the surrounding microenvironment, and the exploration of the links between cytoskeletal and motor protein defects and human disease. Active seminar and journal club programs cover the latest advances in the field. Penn investigators have a rich history in the study of the cytoskeleton motility, and adhesion, and continue to apply multi-disciplinary, state-of-the-art technologies to probe the mechanisms driving cellular dynamics.