PI Name: Erin Goley
Number of Years in BCMB: 1.5
Model System(s): Caulobacter crescentus
Research Area: Mechanisms underlying cytokinesis in bacteria
Lab Personnel: Erin Goley, PhD; Alex Hessel, Research Tech; Elizabeth Meier, BCMB student
What is your favorite thing about BCMB?
Elizabeth Meier (EM): When choosing a lab, I appreciated the large number of BCMB faculty with diverse areas of research. I also have enjoyed recruitment weekend: ensuring that prospective students both have a good time and get a realistic idea of what it is like to live in Baltimore and be a graduate student at Hopkins.
What does your lab do for fun?
EM: Our lab does a lot of joint activities with the Margolis lab such as attending Orioles games, overeating at Indian lunch buffets, and hosting BBQs or holiday parties. Recently, we have started an informal game of Horse in the hallway between our labs using K-cups from our Keurig machine.
Where do you see your research going in the next 5 years?
EM: To understand how bacterial cells divide, we focus on the function and regulation of the highly conserved tubulin-like protein, FtsZ. Previous work suggests that FtsZ acts as a scaffold for the assembly of the cytokinetic machinery and generates the constrictive force necessary to drive cell division. However, molecular details of force generation on the membrane and how FtsZ superstructure and dynamics relate to its function are still areas of active research. Of particular interest to our lab is how FtsZ interacting proteins regulate FtsZ function over the cell cycle.
Celebrating the isolation of the thousandth Caulobacter strain in December 2012.
From left to right: Alex Hessel, Erin Goley, Elizabeth Meier, Phil Cox (Fall 2012 rotation student)