Our overarching goal is to develop quantitative molecular platforms to detect and identify molecular interactomes of membrane proteins and determine their hierarchical organization directly from the cellular environment with precise spatial and molecular resolution. To achieve this we exploit the cross-disciplinary expertise of our lab and combine nativeMS with a range of orthogonal quantitative approaches. Together, they provide unique quantitative tools to study membrane biology. Research in our lab spans from designing fundamentally novel experimental platforms to studying specific membrane-associated signaling pathways. Our special emphasis lies in understanding neural signaling and associated impairment in neurodegenerative diseases. Some of the key questions we are currently addressing are:
(i) How hierarchical organization of proteins and lipids at the synaptic vesicles regulate fast Ca2+ mediated release of neurotransmitters at the neuronal synapses?
(ii) How trafficking of lipids and proteins at the membrane contact site of the cellular organelle regulate cellular homeostasis and their impairments lead to different neurocognitive disorders?
(iii) How do we develop next-generation quantitative nativeMS platforms for direct analysis of cellular signaling complexes from their native endogenous membranes?
We work closely with researchers with varied expertise. While we love the physicists and the chemists who develop novel experimental tools, we cannot live without the biologists and the medics who use these cutting-edge techniques to solve the problems most pertinent to humankind. We even have an anthropologist. We are always interested in innovators, the creative thinkers, the dreamers, and the doers.