Research InterestsPrimordial germ cells, plasma membrane reorganization, ATP binding cassette, pollutant sensors
Research AreaResearch projects in the lab generally center around developmental biology and/or environmental toxicology. A common thread is our interest in the plasma membrane, and in understanding how this membrane is adapted to perform diverse functions from signaling to protection to cell motility. We have primarily focused on proteins called “transporters” that control the movement of small molecules across the plasma membrane. Transporters perform diverse functions from distribution of signaling molecules within a developing embryo, to limiting the uptake of pollutants. One of the families of transporters we are studying are the ABC (ATP-binding cassette) transporters. This is a large (typically >50 genes in deuterostomes), conserved family of membrane proteins encoding proteins that transport lipids, ions, signaling molecules and xenobiotics across membranes. A second major interest in the lab is to understand how natural and anthropogenic chemicals gain entry into cells and why some chemicals are more persistent within cells than others. Traditional approaches to this problem focus on understanding the physical and chemical properties of chemicals that govern their fate in the environment or tendency to cross cell membranes. We approach the problem of persistence from the perspective of the cell by understanding the cell biological mechanisms, such as efflux transport, that lead to unexpected patterns of accumulation.
Current MembersHamdoun, Amro (Principal Investigator/Director)
Vacquier, Victor D (Principal Investigator/Director)
ContactInstitution: Scripps Institution of Oceanography Address:
Web Page: http://www.hamdounlab.org/General/Lab Fax: 858-822-4303