Welcome to the
Laboratory of Protein and Cell Engineering !

At the LPCE, we work at the interface of biophysics, chemical, structural, computational and cell biology to uncover the molecular principles that regulate protein and cellular signaling. We use this understanding to (1) design protein systems with novel biosensing and signaling functions for synthetic biology and engineered cell therapeutic applications; (2) predict the effects of genetic variations on protein structure/function for personalized cancer medicine applications.

We are particularly interested in deciphering the molecular underpinnings regulating signaling and transport across biological membranes, which control cellular processes but have been particularly challenging to study experimentally.

receptor_activation

We currently address the following outstanding questions:

  1. Can we develop computational techniques to accurately model and design membrane protein structures and interactions with small drug, lipid and peptide molecules?
  2. Can we design membrane receptors with reprogrammed signaling properties for synthetic biology and neurobiological applications?
  3. Can we design membrane protein systems to rewire signaling pathways in engineered immune cells for improving cancer immunotherapies?
  4. Can we interrogate genome sequences with protein modeling for precision personalized cancer medicine?

Part of our research group is also located at Baylor College of Medicine:
https://www.bcm.edu/research/labs/patrick-barth