Ted Feldman


Graduate Student, Applied Physics, Harvard University,
School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Contact : tfeldman@mit.edu, tfeldman@fas.harvard.edu

B.E. in Engineering Sciences (specialization: Materials Science and Engineering), Stony Brook University (SUNY), Honors College, May 2007

B.S. in Physics, Stony Brook University (SUNY), Honors College, May 2007
S.M. in Applied Physics, Harvard University, June 2009

Research Interest
   Actin is one of the primary protein components of the cellular cytoskeleton.  By forming networks
of filaments spanning considerable intracellular distances, it provides the cell with structural support. 
However, actin also plays central roles in cell motility, cell division and force transmission  through 
the cell. Consequently, the dynamics of actin are pivotal to the initiation of mechanotransduction or the physio-chemical response of cells to mechanical stimuli.  The varied functions of actin also mean
that it has tremendous implications in medicine and disease.  The dynamics of actin filament
polymerization and the protein-protein interactions responsible for the regulation of the actin network
have been implicated in the tumorigenisis, the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease, bacterial
infections and viral entry. Moreover, actin filaments are of keen interest as a new platform for the
delivery of gene therapies and as a model material system for energy storage technology.  
  To understand better the remarkable behavior of filamentous actin, I investigate the mechanochemistry
and dynamics of actin regulatory proteins using optical microscopy and force spectroscopy.  
Specifically, I am interested in learning how these proteins use mechanical signals  to regulate 
the polymerization/de-polymerization of actin filaments at the single-molecule level.