Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania







Professor of Physiology
Director of Pennsylvania Muscle Institute

Department of Physiology
700 Clinical Research Building
415 Curie Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6085

Phone: 215-573-9758
Lab: 215-898-3685
Fax: 215-573-2273

Lab web page:

Other Perelman School of Medicine Affiliations
Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Program
Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics Graduate Program
Pennsylvania Muscle Institute

B.S., Chemistry, Illinois State University, 1988
Ph.D., Biochemistry, University of Minnesota, 1993

Established Investigator, American Heart Association
American Heart Association, Scientist Development Grant
NIH Molecular Biophysics Training Grant
Damon Runyon-Walter Winchell Fellow
Mary L. Smith Award for Cardiovascular Research

Professional Affiliations
American Society for Cell Biology
Biophysical Society

Research Interests
Cell Motility, Muscle Contraction, Biochemical Kinetics, Cell Biophysics

Research Description
The long-range goal of my research is to understand the function, regulation, and molecular mechanism of myosin-I, a membrane-based molecular motor, in Cell Motility and transport. It is believed that myosin-I plays an integral role in the dynamic organization and transport of plasma and intracellular membranes. This type of membrane-based motility is essential in normal (e.g., amoebas and macrophages) and pathological cells (e.g., metastatic cancer cells) for several crucial cell functions including endocytosis, membrane trafficking, osmoregulation, and whole Cell Motility.

Despite intensive study, the physiological roles and molecular mechanisms of myosin-I have remained a mystery, in large part, because a single cell expresses several isoforms of myosin-I with (apparently) similar biochemical properties. To better define the individual roles of the myosin-I isoforms, we are using a rigorous interdisciplinary approach (combining chemistry, biophysics, cell, and molecular biology) to investigate the actual molecular machinery that is responsible for cell movements. We are obtaining a physical framework in which to discuss myosin-I function by investigating the enzymatic and structural properties of native and recombinant myosin-I isoforms, and we are investigating the in vivo localization, organization, dynamics, and physiology of myosin-I in fixed and live cells using high-resolution microscopy techniques. The correlation of the chemical and physical properties of myosin-I with the cellular dynamics will allow us to better define the physiological roles and molecular mechanisms of myosin-I.

Click here for a full list of publications
(searches the National Library of Medicine's PubMed database.)

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