School of Medicine
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Professor of Molecular and Cellular Physiology, of Neurology, of Photon Science and, by courtesy, of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOne of Axel Brunger's major goals is to decipher the molecular mechanisms of synaptic neurotransmitter release by conducting imaging and single-molecule/particle reconstitution experiments, combined with near-atomic resolution structural studies of the synaptic vesicle fusion machinery.
Associate Professor of Bioengineering and, by courtesy, of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMolecular motors lie at the heart of biological processes from DNA replication to vesicle transport. My laboratory seeks to understand the physical mechanisms by which these nanoscale machines convert chemical energy into mechanical work.
Professor (Teaching) of Structural Biology, Emerita
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsI am not now actively involved in research, but my past endeavors remain central to my position in guiding medical students in their scholarship pursuits.
The cited publications represent three areas of interest:
(1) medical student research (Jacobs and Cross)
(2) women in medicine (Cross and Steward)
(3) the reproductive physiology of early development (Cross and Brinster)
Only one publication is listed in this area since the research is not current, but others (in e.g. Nature, DevBiol, ExpCellRes) give a broader picture of my pursuit when at the University of Pennsylvania.
Adam de la Zerda
Associate Professor of Structural Biology and, by courtesy, of Electrical Engineering
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMolecular imaging technologies for studying cancer biology in vivo
Associate Professor of Computer Science and, by courtesy, of Molecular and Cellular Physiology and of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsMy lab’s research focuses on computational biology, with an emphasis on 3D molecular structure. We combine two approaches: (1) Bottom-up: given the basic physics governing atomic interactions, use simulations to predict molecular behavior; (2) Top-down: given experimental data, use machine learning to predict molecular structures and properties. We collaborate closely with experimentalists and apply our methods to the discovery of safer, more effective drugs.
Younger Family Professor and Professor of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsStructural and functional studies of transmembrane receptor interactions with their ligands in systems relevant to human health and disease - primarily in immunity, infection, and neurobiology. We study these problems using protein engineering, structural, biochemical, and combinatorial biology approaches.
Professor of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe Jardetzky laboratory is studying the structures and mechanisms of macromolecular complexes important in viral pathogenesis, allergic hypersensitivities and the regulation of cellular growth and differentiation, with an interest in uncovering novel conceptual approaches to intervening in disease processes. Ongoing research projects include studies of paramyxovirus and herpesvirus entry mechanisms, IgE-receptor structure and function and TGF-beta ligand signaling pathways.
Mrs. George A. Winzer Professor of Medicine
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsWe study the regulation of transcription, the first step in gene expression. The main lines of our work are 1) reconstitution of the process with more than 50 pure proteins and mechanistic analysis, 2) structure determination of the 50 protein complex at atomic resolution, and 3) studies of chromatin remodelling, required for transcription of the DNA template in living cells
Robert W. and Vivian K. Cahill Professor of Cancer Research and Professor, by courtesy, of Computer Science
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsStanford Professor of Biophysics and Computational Biology, Cambridge PhD and DSc, 2013 Chemistry Nobel Laureate (complex systems), FRS & US National Academy member, I code well for my age.
David B. McKay
Professor of Structural Biology, Emeritus
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThree-dimensional structure determination and biophysical studies of macromolecules.
Professor of Structural Biology and of Microbiology and ImmunologyOn Leave from 03/01/2022 To 12/15/2022
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe Parham laboratory investigates the biology, genetics, and evolution of MHC class I molecules and NK cell receptors.
Joseph (Jody) Puglisi
Jauch Professor and Professor of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe Puglisi group investigates the role of RNA in cellular processes and disease. We investigate dynamics using single-molecule approaches. Our goal is a unified picture of structure, dynamics and function. We are currently focused on the mechanism and regulation of translation, and the role of RNA in viral infections. A long-term goal is to target processes involving RNA with novel therapeutic strategies.
Assistant Professor of Structural Biology and of Chemical and Systems Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur team is fascinated by how cells make growth decisions — to grow or not to grow. In order to grow, cells require nutrients, and we are unraveling how cells use specialized protein sensors and transporters to sense and traffic nutrients in between various compartments. We use approaches from structural biology, chemical biology, biophysics, biochemistry, and cell biology — to reveal the mechanisms of basic biological processes, and we develop chemical probes that modulate them.
Naima G. Sharaf
Assistant Professor of Biology and, by courtesy, of Structural Biology
BioNaima Sharaf got her undergraduate degree in Chemistry at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. She carried out her Ph.D. studies at the University of Pittsburgh in the lab of Dr. Angela Gronenborn where she used fluorine solution NMR to understand inhibitor-induced conformational changes with HIV-1 reverse transcriptase. To expand her structural biology skill set, she undertook postdoctoral training at Caltech in the lab of Dr. Doug Rees where she characterized the structure and function of the Neisseria meningitides methionine ABC transport system using x-ray crystallography and single-particle cryo-EM. This research sparked Dr. Sharaf's current interest in lipoproteins, particularly their roles in bacterial physiology and potential in vaccine design. Research in the Sharaf Lab bridges biochemistry, biology, microbiology, and immunology to translate lipoprotein research into therapeutics.
Professor of Molecular and Cellular Physiology, of Structural Biology and of Photon Science
BioThe Skiniotis laboratory seeks to resolve structural and mechanistic questions underlying biological processes that are central to cellular physiology. Our investigations employ primarily cryo-electron microscopy (cryoEM) and 3D reconstruction techniques complemented by biochemistry, biophysics and simulation methods to obtain a dynamic view into the macromolecular complexes carrying out these processes. The main theme in the lab is the structural biology of cell surface receptors that mediate intracellular signaling and communication. Our current main focus is the exploration of the mechanisms responsible for transmembrane signal instigation in cytokine receptors and G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) complexes.
Professor of Photon Science and of Structural Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsUbiquitin signaling: structure, function, and therapeutics
Ubiquitin is a small protein modifier that is ubiquitously produced in the cells and takes part in the regulation of a wide range of cellular activities such as gene transcription and protein turnover. The key to the diversity of the ubiquitin roles in cells is that it is capable of interacting with other cellular proteins either as a single molecule or as different types of chains. Ubiquitin chains are produced through polymerization of ubiquitin molecules via any of their seven internal lysine residues or the N-terminal methionine residue. Covalent interaction of ubiquitin with other proteins is known as ubiquitination which is carried out through an enzymatic cascade composed of the ubiquitin-activating (E1), ubiquitin-conjugating (E2), and ubiquitin ligase (E3) enzymes. The ubiquitin signals are decoded by the ubiquitin-binding domains (UBDs). These domains often specifically recognize and non-covalently bind to the different ubiquitin species, resulting in distinct signaling outcomes.
We apply a combination of the structural (including protein crystallography, small angle x-ray scattering, cryo-electron microscopy (Cryo-EM) etc.), biocomputational and biochemical techniques to study the ubiquitylation and deubiquitination processes, and recognition of the ubiquitin chains by the proteins harboring ubiquitin-binding domains. Current research interests including SARS-COV2 proteases and their interactions with polyubiquitin chains and ubiquitin pathways in host cell responses, with an ultimate goal of providing strategies for effective therapeutics with reduced levels of side effects.
Protein self-assembly processes and applications.
The Surface layers (S-layers) are crystalline protein coats surrounding microbial cells. S-layer proteins (SLPs) regulate their extracellular, self-assembly by crystallizing when exposed to an environmental trigger. We have demonstrated that the Caulobacter crescentus SLP readily crystallizes into sheets both in vivo and in vitro via a calcium-triggered multistep assembly pathway. Observing crystallization using a time course of Cryo-EM imaging has revealed a crystalline intermediate wherein N-terminal nucleation domains exhibit motional dynamics with respect to rigid lattice-forming crystallization domains. Rate enhancement of protein crystallization by a discrete nucleation domain may enable engineering of kinetically controllable self-assembling 2D macromolecular nanomaterials. In particular, this is inspiring designing robust novel platform for nano-scale protein scaffolds for structure-based drug design and nano-bioreactor design for the carbon-cycling enzyme pathway enzymes. Current research focuses on development of nano-scaffolds for high throughput in vitro assays and structure determination of small and flexible proteins and their interaction partners using Cryo-EM, and applying them to cancer and anti-viral therapeutics.
Multiscale imaging and technology developments.
Multimodal, multiscale imaging modalities will be developed and integrated to understand how molecular level events of key enzymes and protein network are connected to cellular and multi-cellular functions through intra-cellular organization and interactions of the key machineries in the cell. Larger scale organization of these proteins will be studied by solution X-ray scattering and Cryo-EM. Their spatio-temporal arrangements in the cell organelles, membranes, and cytosol will be further studied by X-ray fluorescence imaging and correlated with cryoEM and super-resolution optical microscopy. We apply these multiscale integrative imaging approaches to biomedical, and environmental and bioenergy research questions with Stanford, DOE national labs, and other domestic and international collaborators.
William M. Hume Professor in the School of Medicine, Professor of Structural Biology, of Molecular and Cellular Physiology and of Photon ScienceOn Partial Leave from 01/01/2022 To 08/31/2022
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur laboratory studies molecular interactions that underlie the establishment and maintenance of cell and tissue structure. Our principal areas of interest are the architecture and dynamics of intercellular adhesion junctions, signaling pathways that govern cell fate determination, and determinants of cell polarity. Our overall approach is to reconstitute macromolecular assemblies with purified components in order to analyze them using biochemical, biophysical and structural methods.