Research interest

Research interests

Cells carry thousands of nanomachines that assemble, disassemble, transport and process biomolecules, performing essential, highly-interconnected processes. We study how protein machines of gene expression work mainly by watching directly the dynamics of single molecules of such machinery, both in well-controlled in vitro settings as well in the chaotic and fascinating environment of a living cell.

Our most intensely studied system is gene transcription (the process by which genes are converted into RNA molecules) in bacteria. We study the fundamental mechanisms of transcription initiation and elongation, as well as the coupling of transcription with other processes such as translation and chromosome dynamics. We have also studied processes in DNA repair and viral RNA packaging, often in collaboration with biologist colleagues.  

Our work is multidisciplinary, combining our single-molecule measurement with single-cell imaging, biochemistry, molecular biology, molecular modelling, microfluidics, advanced data analysis and machine learning.

The lab is also exploring applied aspects of single-molecule and single-cell imaging, especially in the fields of DNA sequencing and viral/bacterial diagnostics. These efforts benefit from an atmosphere of entrepreneurship and innovation in the group, which has led to the formation of spin-out companies, public involvement, and relevance in policy-making topics.