Microbial genetics, molecular biology, signal transduction, prokaryotic development, biofilm formation and surface motility, type IV pili (Tfp), pathogenesis and vaccine
The ability of a microbe (pathogenic or otherwise) to sense and respond to environmental changes is central to whatever it does including its survival and proliferation. Current research in the lab largely focuses on deciphering how Tfp can function as physical sensors for the presence of other cells and how a signal transduction pathway can regulate the production/biogenesis of a polysaccharide cell surface structure. We mostly use Myxococcus xanthus, a gliding and developmental bacterium, as the model organism for our research. Techniques used in the lab include those of microbial genetics, molecular biology, advanced microscopy, biochemistry and computational biology.