We investigate the function and regulation of microtubule networks in mammalian cells. Microtubules play important roles in a variety of cellular processes, including cell division, cell migration, and neuronal morphogenesis. The microtubule polymer is highly dynamic within cells, and a large number of microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) interact with microtubules and modulate their dynamics, nucleation, and stability, as well as their interactions with other proteins and organelles. The precise regulation of microtubule dynamics and interactions differs over cell development, the cell cycle, and intracellular space, and is essential to the cellular processes in which microtubules function. Misregulation of these properties can lead to disease progression, and it is thus important to understand how changes in microtubule dynamics facilitate function, and how these changes are regulated.
We primarily investigate these problems in human cancer and non-transformed cell lines, as well as mouse embryonic stem cells and neuronal cells, using a combination of genome modification strategies, live-cell fluorescence microscopy, and quantitative interaction proteomics.
Contact us about opportunities/positions in our research group!
Bird Lab - July 2016