My research program is focused on the development of ultra-sensitive
and ultra-high resolution measurement techniques and applying these techniques
to biological systems. These cutting-edge experimental approaches represent
the ultimate in detection and can provide powerful new insight into a range
of exciting biophysical systems. By nature, my research is very interdisciplinary,
involving analytical, biological and physical chemistry, with an occasional
dash of physics and statistics.
Currently, research in my group is divided into three main sections:
For more information on current research, please see the "research"
- Development of chemically sensitive Atomic Force Microscopy
The goal of this work is to modify the Atomic Force Microscope
(AFM) such that the technique provides chemical sensitivity in addition
to its exquisite (sub-nanometer) spatial resolution. The ultimate goal
of the project is to develop a general tool useful for combined chemical
and topographical mapping of biomaterial surfaces.
- Single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy of biomolecules
Single-molecule spectroscopy is an exciting, cutting-edge field
of research in which individual molecules (fluorophores) can be observed
at room temperature and in condensed phases. By observing individual biological
molecules we can observe behaviour which is averaged out in 'bulk' ensemble
measurements. The ultimate goal of this work is to characterize dynamic,
biological events at the level of a single biomolecule.
- Synchrotron-based single-molecule measurements
The development of the Canadian Light Source (CLS) at the University
of Saskatchewan has made possible an entirely new type of single-molecule
measurement, based upon x-ray diffraction of microcrystals tethered to surface-bound
biomolecules. This project will commence upon completion of the CLS (est.2004).