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Nathan Derr

Assistant Professor

email Send E–mail office Office:Sabin Reed 435 phone Phone: 585–3966

Nathan Derr PhotoNathan Derr earned his Ph.D. from Harvard University.

The Derr lab pursues the biophysical and cell biological mechanisms of the cytoskeletal molecular motors dynein and kinesin.

We study these molecular machines in two ways: 1) at the level of individual motors to better understand how they convert ATP into the productive work required by the cell, and 2) in small ensembles that allow us to observe how these motors interact with one another at the nano-scale. In these studies, we often employ techniques from the field of DNA structural nanotechnology.

The Derr lab also pursues synthetic biology and the application of molecular motors to engineered nanoscale transport devices.

Selected publications:

Derr ND*, Goodman BS*, Jungman R, Leschziner AE, Shih WM, Reck-Peterson SL. (2012) Tug of War in Motor Protein Ensembles Revealed with a Programmable DNA Origami Scaffold. Science 338: 662.
*denotes equal contributions
Commentary on this research appeared in: Science 338:626 (2012)
Current Biology 22:1053 (2012)

Goodman BS, Derr ND, Reck-Peterson SL. (2012) Engineered, harnessed and hijacked: synthetic uses for cytoskeletal systems. Trends in Cell Biology 22: 664.

Qiu W*, Derr ND*, Goodman BS, Villa E, Wu D, Shih W, Reck-Peterson SL. (2012) Dynein achieves processive motion using both stochastic and coordinated stepping. Nature Structural and Molecular Biology 19: 193. *denotes equal contributions
Commentary on this research appeared in: Nature 482: 7383 (2012).

Reck-Peterson SL, Derr ND, Stuurman N. (2010) Single molecule imaging using total internal reflection microscopy. In Live Cell Imaging: a laboratory manual, 2nd edition. Cold Spring Harbor Press.