Research in the Tucker Lab focuses on the study and manipulation of protein interactions and pathways, including protein homeostasis and signaling pathways. In particular, we are interested in developing novel technologies that allow use of light for photocontrol of protein function. These engineered optogenetic tools allow regulation of molecular biochemistry and cellular behaviors in live cells with fast temporal and spatial precision. We are also developing ways to use these tools to visualize protein-protein interactions in a cellular context. In addition, we are also interested in developing approaches to characterize and rescue misfolded proteins, designing new genetic assays to characterize unstable human disease proteins, and developing sensors of ligand-binding events. The approaches we take in the lab are interdisciplinary, ranging from biochemistry and protein engineering, to yeast genetics and screening, to molecular biology, cell biology, and imaging.


- May 2016, Chandra speaks at EMBO Practical Course: Non-neuronal Optogenetics

- April 2016, Amir's paper "Optimized second generation CRY2/CIB dimerizers and photoactivatable Cre recombinase" in press at Nature Chemical Biology

- Dec 2015, optogenetics research highlighted in Nature magazine, 'Micromanagement with light'

- Chandra co-organizer of Janelia Farm workshop, 'Genetic control of neuronal activity IV', set for Fall 2016

- Fall 2015, Qi Liu joins lab as postdoc

- Jess's paper 'Optical control of peroxisomal trafficking' published in ACS Chemical Biology (Nov 2015)

- Tucker and Kennedy labs awarded Brain Initiative R21 grant to develop new neuronal tools! (Sept 2015)

-Chandra co-organizes Keystone Symposia on Optogenetics, March 2015 in Denver!

- Amir's CRY2olig paper highlighted in Nature Methods, Nov 2014 issue

- Gopal's paper 'Benchmarking of optical dimerizer systems' published

- Amir's paper "An optimized optogenetic clustering tool for probing protein interaction and function" published at Nature Communications (Sept 2014)


***Available positions / July 2016: A postdoctoral fellow position in the area of optogenetic tool development is currently available.***

Lake Haiyaha - Rocky Mountain National Park


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