We're interested in understanding the roles of protein dynamics in human health and disease. Proteins display a fascinating spectrum of dynamic behavior, ranging from some that are almost static to others that rapidly interconvert between a diverse ensemble of structures. The nature, amplitude and timescales of protein conformational fluctuations can be crucial to biological functions such as enzyme catalysis and intracellular signaling. Mutations, post-translational modifications and environmental factors can perturb protein dynamics – and hence normal function – in ways that are difficult to predict.
We are developing new and powerful methods to characterize and control protein dynamics, building on recent advances in biophysics, biochemistry and pharmacology from groups around the world. Our approaches encompass single-molecule fluorescence and complementary spectroscopic tools, computational modeling, drug design and protein engineering. Initially, we're focusing on proteins involved in degenerative disorders (such as Alzheimer's disease), the oxidative stress response, and drug metabolism.
Please see our Research page for more details on the systems we study and the techniques we use.