Cells are just machines that compute – small, incredibly complex biological machines, but machines nonetheless. Research in the BIOMAN LAB (BIOmolecular Mechanics And Nanotechnology LABoratory) is dedicated to understanding biomolecular machines, primarily using a Physics and synthetic approach. That is, rather than examining in mechanistic detail what occurs in cells, we take the reductionist and engineering approach of asking, "What can we build from purified protein machines?" BIOMAN LAB combines tools from DNA nanotechnology, organic chemistry, super-resolution microscopy, and new technologies for (1) controlling nucleation and lattice structures of microtubules, (2) studying complex behaviors of groups of molecular machines, and (3) reconstructing mechanical systems involved in malaria parasite invasion.
Students will work with graduate students and/or a postdoc in exploring the field of DNA nanotechnology from the view of physics, chemistry, and mathematics. It is an excellent opportunity for students who want to learn research or prepare for graduate schools.