The laboratory of Emanuel Strehler, Ph.D., is interested in the mechanisms of localized Ca2+ signaling and the molecular toolkit needed to ensure proper Ca2+ homeostasis in the cell.
Cells are equipped with mechanisms to tightly control the influx, efflux and resting level of Ca2+. Inappropriate Ca2+ signaling and abnormal Ca2+ levels are involved in many clinical disorders, including heart disease, Alzheimer's disease and stroke.
Ca2+ also plays a major role in cell growth, differentiation and motility. Disturbances in these processes underlie cell transformation and the progression of cancer.
Current projects in the laboratory focus on two calcium regulatory systems:
- Plasma membrane calcium pumps, which are responsible for extrusion of Ca2+ from the cell and have been linked to multiple disorders, including hearing loss and ataxia
- Calmodulin-like protein CALML3 and its targets, specifically myosin-10, which may be important in cell adhesion and migration in normal cell differentiation and cancer
Dr. Strehler's laboratory collaborates with several groups at Mayo and internationally. A broad range of techniques are used in the lab, including those related to molecular biology (PCR, mutagenesis and vector construction); protein biochemistry (protein expression, labeling, spectroscopy, kinetic measurements and structural analyses); and cell biology (confocal fluorescence microscopy, cell transfection and life cell imaging).