Tobias S. Ulmer

Associate Professor,
Dept. of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Zilkha Neurogenetic Institute
Keck School of Medicine of USC
PIBBS Mentor

Research Topics

  • Signal Transduction
  • Aging and Associated Diseases
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Structural Biology

Research Overview

My research program centers on elucidating the molecular mechanism underlying physiological function and pathological dysfunction, respectively, of biological processes at atomic resolution. Specifically, the three-dimensional structure of proteins, their dynamics as well as protein-protein and protein-lipid interactions are determined. As a principal research tool, high-resolution, multidimensional solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is employed. My overarching interest is devoted to the structural biology of proteins that are either membrane embedded or membrane surface-bound.

Specifically, my laboratory focuses on understanding
(1) the structural basis of transmembrane signaling in cell surface receptors,
(2) the mechanism of misfolding of the protein a-synuclein, underlying the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease, and
(3) the mechanism of carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1 regulation.