Our laboratory is interested in investigating the molecular mechanisms of selenoproteins in health and disease. Selenoproteins are a unique family of proteins that incorporate the micronutrient selenium in the form of the 21st genetically encoded amino acid, selenocysteine. These proteins are found in all three domains of life, highlighting their evolutionary prevalence and significance, with the human selenoproteome consisting of 25 selenoproteins. Several human selenoproteins have even been implicated in various pathophysiologies including cancer, cardiovascular, and neurological disorders.
Despite their evolutionary prevalence and pathological significance, the activities of these selenoproteins remain enigmatic. Projects in the lab utilize a multidisciplinary approach consisting of molecular biology, biochemistry, structural biology, and cell biology to study the role of selenoproteins in human physiology and pathophysiology.