Watching the inner life of a cell
Cellular processes are carried out by coordinated participation of many biomolecules in a tiny volume. Many people have been dreaming to see clear pictures of these processes in order to understand how these molecules work together. Taking on this challenge, we are developing new visualization techniques and imaging probes by combining super-resolution microscopy, protein engineering and microfluidic automation. We are particularly interested in the following problems:
- Physical organization and dynamics of the genome,
- Architecture of large protein complexes such as the centrosome, and
- Spatial distribution of membrane proteins, particularly G-protein coupled receptors and neuron adhesion molecules, and how this distribution defines their signaling specificity.
In order to study these systems, we are developing the following microscopy technologies:
- Super-resolution and light-sheet microscopes that can visualize subcellular structures at a higher spatial resolution, record long term cell behavior, and track cells in intact animals, and
- New fluorescent probes based on fluorescent proteins, nanobodies and aptamers so that biological questions can be converted into "imageable" ones.
- Congratualations to Joerg for passing thesis defense!
- Congratulations to Veronica for winning the American Heart Association predoctural fellowhship!
- Congratulations to Veronica for being selected as a UCSF Discovery Fellow!