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.
We use a range of biochemical, cell biological, and biophysical techniques in our research. These techniques include stopped-flow kinetics, single-molecule fluorescence, optical trapping, and live-cell microscopy. Our laboratory is located in the Clinical Research Building on the Penn Medicine Campus. Ostap Laboratory personnel are active members of the Pennsylvania Muscle Institute (PMI), which is an interdisciplinary group of researchers at Penn that are dedicated to the study of the mechanisms of muscle function, muscle disease, and motile biological systems.