Athar Chishti, PhD

Athar

Professor of Developmental, Molecular & Chemical Biology

 

Education

BS, Biochemistry, AM University
PhD, Biochemistry, University of Melbourne
Postdoctoral Training, Harvard University

Location

Campus: Boston
Office: Jaharis 714
Laboratory: Jaharis 701A

Contact Information

Office Phone: 617-636-3457
Lab Phone: 617-636-2103
E-mail   Send an e-mail 

Links

Research Web Site  Lab Research Page
Recent Publications  Abstract in PubMed

Graduate Programs

Cell, Molecular & Developmental BiologyMolecular Microbiology, Pharmacology 

 

Research Synopsis

My primary research interest is in the assembly and regulation of the mammalian cytoskeleton. We study cytoskeletal and signaling proteins in diseases that afflict blood cells. Current topics include: (1) Mechanism of malaria parasite pathogenesis in red blood cells (RBCs) / erythrocytes. Identification of malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, ligands and their cognate host receptors is essential for the development of new drugs and vaccines against malaria, a disease that kills nearly 700,000 people each year, with the majority of deaths occur in young children in sub-Saharan Africa. Recently we identified a complex of erythrocyte membrane Band 3 (anion exchanger-1 protein) and Glycophorin A as a crucial host invasion receptor for multiple parasite proteins. We are currently investigating the adhesion mechanism of infected erythrocytes, a critical event for the development of cerebral malaria. (2) We generated the first mouse models of calpain-1 and dematin deficiency, thus contributing to the mechanism of platelet tyrosine phosphatase (PTP1B) regulation and calcium mobilization. Recently, these studies led to the development of calpain-1 null Towns mouse model of sickle cell disease. Currently we are investigating calpain-1 and its substrates as potential pharmacological targets of sickle cell disease with a focus on pain, adhesion, and thrombosis. (3) We are investigating the mechanism(s) of intracellular trafficking of membrane proteins, lipids, and vesicles to specific subcellular sites via the kinesin motors. The major components of this pathway (scaffolding protein p55/MPP1, DLG human discs large tumor suppressor, and kinesin motor GAKIN/KIF13B) were identified in our laboratory from hematopoietic cells.

 

Lab Members

Haifa Almukadi, PhD Student in Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Daniel Fritz, PhD Student in Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology  Send an e-mail Lab Research Page
Toshihiko Hanada, Research Assistant Professor Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Shreeya Hegde, MS Student in Pharmacology & Drug Development Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Maima Kaiser, MS Student in Pharmacology & Drug Development Send an e-mail Lab Research Page
Donna-Marie Mironchuk, Lab Manager Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Farha Mithila, PREP Scholar Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Christopher Schwake, PhD Student in Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page

Apply to the Sackler School

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The priority application deadlines are as follows:

December 1: Basic Science Division PhD Programs

February 15: Building Diversity in Biomedical Sciences

March 31: Post-Baccalaureate Research Program

May 1: Clinical & Translational Science, MS in Pharmacology & Drug Development

June 15: Online Certificate in Fundamentals of Clinical Care Research