We are interested in how cells regulate the intracellular calcium concentration. Cells use changes in calcium as a trigger for many cellular events, including muscle contraction, hormone secretion, and cell growth. The change in calcium levels can be modulated by the cell to tailor its response to the prevailing conditions. We have focused on one aspect of this process, the release of calcium from intracellular stores. We use biophysical, molecular and biochemical techniques to study the classes of calcium release channels known to exist inside virtually all cells the InsP3-gated channel, the ryanodine receptor/channel, and polycystin-2.
Our goal is to understand how the functions of these channels are altered by processes within the cell. The knowledge of how these channels work will form the background for studies of disease-induced changes in calcium release channel function.