UA Biophysics:Membrane Dynamics

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Membrane structure and assembly

p.i. Chad leidy

We have developed a multi-approach strategy involving spectroscopy (FTIR, fluorescence spectroscopy) and microscopy (AFM, fluorescence microscopy) techniques to explore how the physical properties of cell membranes influence a variety of physiological mechanisms that range from cell signaling to membrane mechanical properties. Here we list the ongoing projects:

a)Influence of iipid domain formation and membrane structure on PLA2 activity. This hydrolytic enzyme is highly sensitive to the physical properties of the bilayer membrane. We explore how the modulation of membrane lateral organization can act as a regulator of the enzyme.

b)Physical properties of bacterial membranes and their influence on the susceptibility of bacterial populations towards antibacterial agents.

c)Modeling the motion of giant uniilamellar vesicles interacting with surfaces (an experimental and computational project in collaboration with Dr. Andres Gonzalez in Mechanical Engineering).

d)Modulating membrane fusion through the activity of hydrolytic enzymes and membrane active peptides.

e)Modeling the effects of rhodopsin organization in regulating the dynamics of single photon response.

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