SYSTEMS BIOLOGY

Recently there has been renewed focus on cellular metabolism due to its role in diseases like cancer, and its effect on cell signaling and epigenetics. Understanding cell metabolism is necessary for engineering microbes for biotechnology applications, manipulating stem cells for regenerative medicine, and for understanding metabolic disorders. Yet understanding metabolism poses unique challenges due to its size and complex regulation. To address this challenge, we are developing network modeling approaches that simulate metabolic and regulatory networks, giving us a unique systems perspective. We have applied network approaches that we developed such as PROM, GEMINI and ASTRIX to understand microbial and brain metabolism.  

DRUG DISCOVERY

Another major focus of our lab is to understand antibiotic resistance and design novel therapies using computational approaches. 100,000 people die and a million others are sickened by antibiotic resistant bacteria in the United States every year. There is an urgent need to develop high-throughput approaches to screen promising therapies to counter drug-resistance. Our lab is developing computational platforms that can accelerate the discovery of new candidate drugs and multi-drug combinations for slowing the evolution of antibiotic resistant strains.