SURF

Vivek Musinipally

Characterizing the microtubule-binding activity of CENP-F, an essential kinetochore protein

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States . It has long been known that improper cell division often leads to proliferation of tumors eventually resulting in cancer. Thus, studying the proteins involved in cell division is important to the process of eventually preventing and curing the malignancy. My project involves the characterization of a protein, CENP-F (mitosin), associated in the outer kinetochore of cells that is known to bind microtubules, an essential component that drives cell division. I aim to characterize the microtubule binding activity of CENP-F both biochemically and using electron microscopy. In addition to being a fascinating topic, the findings of this project have potential to reveal important components in an essential cellular process. These findings will also help contribute to therapeutic uses, especially in the treatment and prevention of cancer.

Message to Sponsor

This project allows me to gain great insight into laboratory skills and techniques used in structural biology research. The work I do this summer gives me the opportunity to experience life as a full time researcher working towards a final research goal. Furthermore, the practices I utilize will benefit me through graduate school and the rest of my career. I am thankful to be selected as a SURF fellow.
  • Major: Molecular and Cell Biology
  • Mentor: Eva Nogales, Molecular & Cell Biology