Through the efforts of Dr. Tirrell's laboratory and others, the code has been "reinterpreted" in various ways to enable the participation of an expanded set of amino acids in cellular protein synthesis. These developments have provided a basis for powerful new approaches to protein design and to spatially and temporally resolved analysis of cellular processes.
Dr. Heintz will discuss recent studies of molecular mechanisms that regulate specific cell types and circuits in the mammalian brain, and illustrate their role in modulation of complex social and emotional behaviors.
The Fontan surgical procedure is used to treat children born with particular congenital heart defects, namely to provide a direct connection between the inferior vena cava and the right pulmonary artery. This procedure has proven successful in better oxygenating and delivering blood despite the absence of one ventricle. Tissue engineering promises to enable an improved vascular conduit and is in clinical trials in the USA. There is a need, however, to find an optimal scaffold design that can minimize possible post-operative complications.
The Weissman laboratory is looking at how cells ensure that proteins fold into their correct shape, as well as the role of protein misfolding in disease and normal physiology. They are also developing experimental and analytical approaches for exploring the organizational principles of biological systems and globally monitoring protein translation through ribosome profiling.
Dr. Akil's research program is uncovering some molecular players that are not “the usual suspects”, thereby providing possibilities for new biomarkers and novel drug targets in the treatment of Major Depression.
Dr. Harris will describe the interdisciplinary design of The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health and what has been learned by merging social and biological data on the health of young adults in America.
Dr. Holzbaur's lab is interested in exploring the dynamics of autophagy and mitophagy in neurons, including compartment biogenesis, cargo recognition and capture, and active transport coupled to cargo degradation. Approaches in the lab include live cell imaging in cell lines and primary neurons, in vitro reconstitution assays with single molecule resolution to analyze dynamics of motors and the cytoskeleton, and the development and analysis of animal models for neurodegenerative disease.
The Zallen lab is using molecular, genetic, and cell biological approaches to understand the machinery that directs morphogenetic events. An understanding of the cell rearrangements that occur during normal embryonic development will uncover general principles that build tissues and organs and can provide insight into how deranged versions of these processes contribute to human disease.
The goals of Dr. Nurse's laboratory are to better understand the global cellular networks which regulate the eukaryotic cell cycle, cell form and cell growth. These cellular controls are fundamental to the growth, development and reproduction of all living organisms.
The Gartner lab seeks to answer questions about how tissue structure forms and functions. They take a synthetic approach, building human tissues from the bottom-up, which allows them to measure and perturb the molecular and physical properties of individual cells, reconstitute them into living tissue, then observe their interactions to reveal the underlying "rules" guiding their collective behaviors.
The Edgar lab uses genetics to characterize the programs of cell growth and proliferation that occur during development, regeneration and tumorigenesis, with the goal of finding the genes that act as limiting regulators in each context.
The Clemons lab is primarily interested in understanding the molecular details of life and as a tool we focus on “structural biology”. They currently work on problems related to protein transport across membranes and post-translational modification of proteins. The lab primarily uses X-ray crystallography but also works with biochemistry, microbiology, mass spectrometry and electron microscopy.
Dr. Piel's team studies cell polarization, a process which involves a reorganization of the cell cytoskeleton and movement of cellular organelles, usually triggered by external cues. They are particularly interested in cell polarity in the context of cell migration and cell division.
The Gladfelter lab is interested in how cells are organized in time and space. They study how cytoplasm is spatially patterned and how cells sense their own shape. They also investigate how timing in the cell division cycle can be highly variable yet still accurate. For their work, they combine quantitative live cell microscopy and computational, genetic and biochemical approaches in fungal and mammalian cells.