Michael Ostap

Professor, Director, Pennsylvania Muscle Institute

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700A Clinical Research Building

415 Curie Boulevard

Philadelphia, PA 19104

Research Description

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. 

Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives

  • Mentor, Penn Summer Undergraduate Internship Program
Degrees & Education

BS, Chemistry, Illinois State University, 1988

PhD, Biochemistry, University of Minnesota, 1993

Honors & Awards

Honorary Fellow, AAAS

MERIT AWARD, National Institute of General Medical Sciences, NIH

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

Other Perelman School of Medicine Affiliations

Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Program

Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics Graduate Program

Pennsylvania Muscle Institute

Professional Affiliations

American Society for Cell Biology

Biophysical Society

Recent Publications
January 12, 2023
Ensembles of human myosin-19 bound to calmodulin and regulatory light chain RLC12B drive multi-micron transport
Roberto Dominguez, Ph.D., Michael Ostap, Ph.D., Erika Holzbaur, Ph.D.
Pollard LW, Coscia SM, Rebowski G, Palmer NJ, Holzbaur ELF, Dominguez R, Ostap EM. J Biol Chem. 2023 Jan 12:102906. doi: 10.1016/j.jbc.2023.102906. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36642185.
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March 1, 2022
Myosin modulators: emerging approaches for the treatment of cardiomyopathies and heart failure
Michael Ostap, Ph.D.
Day SM, Tardiff JC, Ostap EM. DOI: 10.1172/JCI148557
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October 27, 2021
Microtubule dynamics influence the retrograde biased motility of kinesin-4 motor teams in neuronal dendrites
Melike Lakadamyali, Ph.D., Erika Holzbaur, Ph.D., Michael Ostap, Ph.D.
Masucci EM, Relich PK, Lakadamyali M, Ostap EM, Holzbaur ELF.Mol Biol Cell. 2021 Oct 27:mbcE21100480. doi: 10.1091/mbc.E21-10-0480. Online ahead of print. PMID: 34705476
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April 19, 2021
Cega: a single particle segmentation algorithm to identify moving particles in a noisy system
Michael Ostap, Ph.D.
Masucci EM, Relich PK, Ostap EM, Holzbaur ELF, Lakadamyali M. - DOI: 10.1091/mbc.E20-11-0744
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June 22, 2020
The mechanochemistry of the kinesin-2 KIF3AC heterodimer is related to strain-dependent kinetic properties of KIF3A and KIF3C
Michael Ostap, Ph.D.
Bensel BM, Woody MS, Pyrpassopoulos S, Goldman YE, Gilbert SP, Ostap EM - DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1916343117 - PMID: 32571914
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February 19, 2021
Myosin with hypertrophic cardiac mutation R712L has a decreased working stroke which is rescued by omecamtiv mecarbil
Michael Ostap, Ph.D.
Snoberger A, Barua B, Atherton JL, Shuman H, Forgacs E, Goldman YE, Winkelmann DA, Ostap EM - DOI: 10.7554/eLife.63691 - PMID: 33605878
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