PhD, Ohio State University, 1960
MS, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and University, 1956
Our research interest focuses on the organization and regulation of stress-inducible genes and their gene products. More specifically, studies involve a family of proteins named metallothionein, which bind transition metals avidly. Metallothionein-encoding genes are inducible by metals and other stress conditions. This family of proteins may have a role in metal homeostasis and detoxification. The approaches used in our studies thus encompass the use of recombinant DNA technology, cloning and site-directed mutagenesis techniques, protein engineering methodology, molecular simulation and computational biology.
Major recent findings include the isolation and characterization of metallothionein genes from rice, Arabidopsis, and porcine. Other accomplishments are centered around the elucidation of metal binding preference by sequence motifs through mutagenesis using transgenic systems and in silico. Current efforts involve ecogenomics using zebrafish as a model system.