Research in my lab focuses on ion transport and electrical activity of the heart. In particular, our work is aimed at understanding mechanistically how and why ion handling by cardiac muscle cells is altered in different etiologies of heart disease and how such changes exacerbate the pathology of the disease. Ultimately, our goal is to identify novel targets for cardioprotection that are tailored to the specific etiology of the underlying heart disease.
Ongoing projects are aimed at deciphering the molecular and cellular mechanisms that underlie the ankyrin-B syndrome, an arrhythmogenic phenotype caused by loss-of-function of the cytoskeletal protein ankyrin-B, and diabetic cardiomyopathy. Our work spans from the molecular level (e.g., development of novel genetically-encoded sensors for measuring local calcium level in subcellular microdomains), to the cellular (e.g., measurements of intracellular ion concentrations, electrical currents through various ion transporters and protein localization) and whole organism level (assessment of electrical activity and contractile function of the heart). We use a combination of cutting edge and traditional approaches based on fluorescence imaging, electrophysiology, molecular biology and biochemistry techniques.