My background in organic chemistry has inspired me to look into molecular mechanisms of biological processes and avenues for developing therapeutics using rational drug design. Broadly, my interests are focused on understanding the mechanisms of protein aggregation and developing tools to prevent it. Specifically, I am interested in understanding the early stages of amyloid-beta peptide, as well as its pathologic mutants’ aggregation and the effects of cell membrane components in aggregation. In addition, I am interested in developing specific inhibitors of the aggregation process using peptidomemetics.
The tools that we use to address each of the above mentioned objectives are primarily biophysical. These include, cicular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, fluoresence, light scattering, mass spectrometry and infra-red spectrocopy. A thorough, molecular level understanding is essential for developing strucure-based drug design. Therefore, in parallel, uitilising the information obtained from in vitro biophysical studies, we are interested in developing molecules that can effectively inhibit the aggregation process. Our reseach is highly interdisciplinary involving a collaborative effort from other laboratories whose expertise might provide answers to some of our research objectives.