The major line of research in our laboratory aims at understanding the molecular basis of structure-function correlations in ion channels. Ion channels have evolved to undergo rapid conformational changes in response to stimuli and thereby tightly regulate ionic fluxes and thus the cell physiology. They have varied architecture and broadly differ in the nature of stimuli, activation timescales and ionic selectivity. This structural and functional diversity allows them to critically govern the rate, duration and amount of current and as a result impact a multitude of cellular processes.

One of the fundamental challenges in this field is to understand how spatially-separated structural motifs of the channel communicate in order to fine-tune its function. The primary focus of our research is to elucidate the conformational dynamics underlying allosteric mechanisms in ligand- and voltage-gated channels, and to determine how these processes control the basic features of channel function namely, gating and selectivity.

The ion channel field is currently positioned with a unique advantage to draw direct information from structural, dynamics and functional measurements. We use multidisciplinary cutting-edge approaches including Cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography, pulsed-EPR spectroscopy, and electrophysiology. These techniques complement each other and allow, at unprecedented detail, an atomic level description of how structure and dynamics govern protein functioning.