The cytoskeleton is a multipurpose network that cells adapt for processes basic to life such as cytokinesis during cell division, cell migration, mechanosensing and production of force. Cell membranes enclose vesicles whose contents are released during synaptic transmission in the nervous system and other vital secretion processes.
To investigate these cellular systems, we use quantitative approaches that integrate experiment, image and data analysis, and mathematical modeling in close collaborations with experimental groups. We study the cellular machines used for cytokinesis, cell migration, cytoskeletal remodeling and mechanical communication with the environment. We also study the mechanisms used by cells to fuse membranes during synaptic release and other secretion processes, and the fusion mechanisms of membrane-enclosed viruses such as influenza during infection.