Structure-function relationships of ion channels; Gene Discovery Project
Influenza Virus Ion Channel
Influenza continues to kill more people in the developed world than AIDS. There are only two inhibitors of the virus that work for people who are already infected, and one of them, amantadine, works by inhibiting the ion channel contained in the virus particle. We study this ion channel because of its importance in the virus and because it serves as a simple model of ion channels in general.
Gene Discovery Project
By mutagenizing mice and screening them for specific functional defects, scientists have been able to discover genes that are involved in the various important biological processes and to create models for important human diseases. An example of one important process is the circadian clock, and the essential Clock gene of the mouse was discovered in our department using this approach. My lab is using this process to identify mutations affecting blindness and asthma.