Michael Ostap, Ph.D.

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Professor of Physiology
Department: Physiology

Contact information
Pennsylvania Muscle Institute &
Department of Physiology
700A Clinical Research Building
415 Curie Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: (215) 573-9758
Lab: (215) 898-3685
B.S. (Chemistry)
Illinois State University, 1988.
Ph.D. (Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biophysics)
University of Minnesota, 1993.
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Description of Research Expertise

Research Interests
Molecular Motors, Cell Motility, Mechanosensing, Single-Molecule Biophysics, Biochemistry

Key words: Cell motility, myosin, actin, biochemistry, biophysics, single molecule, spectroscopy, microscopy, fluorescence, nanotechnology.

Description of Research
The goal of our research is to understand the cellular machinery responsible for powering cell movements and shaping the architecture of cells, tissues, and organs. Our discovery-based research focuses on the role of the cytoskeleton, molecular motors, and signaling pathways in powering cell migration, muscle contraction, and the transport of internal cell compartments. The pathways investigated in our laboratory are crucial for several normal and pathological processes, including: cell and tissue development, endocytosis, wound healing, immune response, cardiomyopathies, and metastases of tumors.

Most of our current efforts are focused on investigating cytoskeletal motors (myosin, dynein, and kinesin). These remarkable nano-machines use chemical energy stored in our cells (in the form of ATP) to generate mechanical force and motion. Cytoskeletal motors are the engines that power muscle contraction, cell migration, intracellular transport, cell division, and cell shape. We are determining how these motors work at the molecular level, how they are physically connected to the machinery they are powering, how they are regulated, how they interact with other motors and signaling networks, and how their fundamental biophysical parameters impact cell function. We are using a range of biochemical, cell biological, single-molecule, and other biophysical techniques to better understand these proteins in health and disease.

Lab Personnel

Betsy Buechler, CAMB Student
Michael Greenberg, Post-doctoral
Tianming Lin, Research Specialist
Serapion Pyrpassopoulos, Post-doctoral
Abbey Weith, Post-doctoral
Michael Woody, BMB Student
Allison Zajac, CAMB Student

Selected Publications

S. Pyrpassopoulos, H. Shuman, E.M. Ostap: Modulation of kinesin’s load-bearing capacity by force geometry and the microtubule track. Submitted 2019 Notes: Bioarxiv: https://doi.org/10.1101/587089.

G. Lebreton, C. Géminard, F. Lapraz, S. Pyrpassopoulos, D. Cerezo, P. Spéder, E.M. Ostap and S. Noselli: Molecular to Organismal Chirality is Induced by the Conserved Myosin-1D. Science 362(6417): 949-952, Nov. 2018.

Michael S. Woody, Michael J. Greenberg, Bipasha Barua, Donald A. Winkelmann, Yale E. Goldman, E. Michael Ostap: Positive Cardiac Inotrope Omecamtiv Mecarbil Activates Muscle Despite Suppressing the Myosin Working Stroke. Nature Commun 9(1): 3838, Sept 2018.

Woody Michael S, Capitanio Marco, Ostap E Michael, Goldman Yale E: Electro-optic deflectors deliver advantages over acousto-optical deflectors in a high resolution, ultra-fast force-clamp optical trap. Optics Express 26(9): 11181-11193, Apr 2018.

Mentes Ahmet, Huehn Andrew, Liu Xueqi, Zwolak Adam, Dominguez Roberto, Shuman Henry, Ostap E Michael, Sindelar Charles V: High-resolution cryo-EM structures of actin-bound myosin states reveal the mechanism of myosin force sensing. PNAS 115(6): 1292-1297, Feb 2018 Notes: Ostap and Sindelar are co-corr. authors.

McIntosh Betsy B, Pyrpassopoulos Serapion, Holzbaur Erika L F, Ostap E Michael: Opposing Kinesin and Myosin-I Motors Drive Membrane Deformation and Tubulation along Engineered Cytoskeletal Networks. Current biology 28(2): 236-248.e5, Jan 2018 Notes: Holzbaur and Ostap are co-corresponding authors.

Pyrpassopoulos Serapion, Shuman Henry, Ostap E Michael: Adhesion force and attachment lifetime of the KIF16B-PX domain interaction with lipid membranes. Molecular biology of the cell 28(23): 3315-3322, Nov 2017.

J. Lewis , R. Jamiolkowski , M.Woody, E.M. Ostap, Y.E. Goldman: Deconvolution of Camera Instrument Response Functions. Biophysical Journal 112(6): 1214-1220, March 2017.

Ghiretti Amy E, Thies Edda, Tokito Mariko K, Lin Tianming, Ostap E Michael, Kneussel Matthias, Holzbaur Erika L F: Activity-Dependent Regulation of Distinct Transport and Cytoskeletal Remodeling Functions of the Dendritic Kinesin KIF21B. Neuron 92(4): 857-872, Nov 2016.

Woody Michael S, Lewis John H, Greenberg Michael J, Goldman Yale E, Ostap E Michael: MEMLET: An Easy-to-Use Tool for Data Fitting and Model Comparison Using Maximum-Likelihood Estimation. Biophysical journal 111(2): 273-82, Jul 2016.

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Last updated: 03/25/2019
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