Structure and function of biological macromolecules examined using the atomic force microscope
* Work in this laboratory involves the use of several techniques to investigate the properties of ion channels, transporters, other membrane proteins and nucleic acids at the molecular level.
* The major thrust of the laboratory is the use of the atomic force microscope (AFM) in conjunction with molecular biology techniques to investigate the structure of molecules and to study and image the nature of interactions of molecules.
* The AFM is an instrument that allows construction of three-dimensional images of biological structures at higher resolution than can be obtained using the electron microscope and it has the important advantage that molecules can be studied in real-time under near-physiological conditions.
* Besides providing images it can also produce information on the strength of interactions between molecules under these near-physiological conditions
* Changes in the structure of molecules in response to physiological stimuli can thus be observed as they occur.