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My laboratory seeks to discover how cells migrate and divide. Using combined experimental and computational approaches we study brain cancer cell migration and division. Both migration and division are driven largely by the dynamics of the cytoskeleton, in particular microtubules and actin filaments. The filament dynamics reflect a complex interplay of self-assembly kinetics, thermodynamics, and molecular motor-based mechanical forces.
We use three approaches in our research:
1) Microscopy, 2) Modeling, and 3) Microsystems. These approaches are integrated so that precise quantitative measurements of forces and velocities can be compared directly to model predictions. To facilitate the comparison, we often model the observation of the cell itself to create synthetic data, which we call "model-convolution microscopy."
We have entered the post-genomic era, giving us the molecular parts list.
We now need to build predictive models for cell behavior, so that we can design more effective therapies.
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