Isosurface model of a vesicle filled with nanocages (left) and a cryo-EM reconstruction of a nanocage with the computational design model (green ribbon) fitted into (right)

Isosurface model of a vesicle filled with nanocages (left) and a cryo-EM reconstruction of a nanocage with the computational design model (green ribbon) fitted into (right)

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Schematic of one step in the protein translocation mechanism of Vps4

Schematic of one step in the protein translocation mechanism of Vps4

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Isosurface model of a vesicle filled with nanocages

Isosurface model of a vesicle filled with nanocages (left) and a cryo-EM reconstruction of a nanocage with the computational design model (green ribbon) fitted into (right)

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CHMP1B opening, strand structure, and electrostatic surface potentials of the IST1NTD-CHMP1B assembly

CHMP1B opening, strand structure, and electrostatic surface potentials of the IST1NTD-CHMP1B assembly

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HIV-1 fullerene cone

Idealized schematic model of an HIV-1 fullerene cone (yellow) bound by a TRIM5α hexagonal net

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IST1NTD-CHMP1B copolymer

Negative stain electron micrograph showing that the IST1NTD-CHMP1B copolymer (white arrows) forms on the outside of membrane (yellow arrows) tubules

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TEM images of HIV virions budding from 293T cells depleted of AMOT

TEM images of HIV virions budding from 293T cells depleted of AMOT

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Crystal structure of the ULK3 MIT2-IST1 MIM1 complex

Crystal structure of the ULK3 MIT2-IST1 MIM1 complex (PDB: 4WZX). Inset shows key interacting side-chains (in green) with ULK3 M434 highlighted in red

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We subscribe to the adage that “viruses are the window on the cell”, and believe that viruses have much to teach us about cell biology and biological principles. All of the projects in our lab had their origins in viral systems, although some have now evolved primarily into biochemistry, cell biology or synthetic biology. Specifically, we study the molecular and structural biology of retroviruses, with particular emphasis on the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). As summarized below, major projects in the laboratory include studies of: 1) Enveloped virus assembly, 2) ESCRT pathway functions and regulation in cell division and cancer, and 3) HIV replication and restriction. Our approaches include structural studies of viral complexes, identification and biochemical analyses of the interactions between viral components and their cellular partners, and genetic analyses of viral and cellular protein functions. We currently have active collaborations in these different areas with the University of Utah labs of Nels Elde, Chris Hill and Katie Ullman, and with Adam Frost (UCSF), Neil King (University of Washington) and Juan Martin-Serrano (Kings College, London). Most importantly, we strive to create a rigorous, supportive, creative, fun, diverse, inclusive and equitable lab environment. [More...]