In general, my laboratory research concerns metabolism --
the set of reactions by which cells extract what they need (chemical energy and
compounds used for growth and repair) from what they have (raw materials or "food").
As an undergraduate, I characterized an individual enzyme (sphinganine kinase)
in plant cells; as a graduate student, I analyzed fluxes through entire pathways (glycolysis
and oxidative phosphorylation) in skeletal muscle cells; and in my postdoctoral work,
I investigated how alterations at particular enzymatic steps lead to flux changes at the
whole-pathway level in methylotrophic bacteria.
I am currently interested in the development of drugs to disrupt metabolism
in organisms such as Plasmodium,
the cause of malaria, and pathogenic E. coli. Our approach to this work includes bioinformatic
prioritization of possible drug targets (using websites like TDRtargets.org and EuPathDB.org), expression
of recombinant proteins in E. coli, and thermal shift and catalytic assays to identify small-molecule
modulators of proteins. This work has been summarized informally as a rap music video directed by coworker Ryan Choi.
I also conduct science education research. Specific interests include the use of primary literature
and music in science classrooms.
A list of my
publications can be found in my