My research interests involve the cell and developmental biology of extracellular matrix. Our major focus is on acquisition of tissue-specific structure and function. These studies address fundamental questions regarding regulation of assembly and are relevant to connective tissues in general. We focus primarily on regulatory interactions involving matrix macromolecules as well as the influence of the fibroblast. We utilize mouse models and extend the work to human tissues as appropriate. While our focus is on the elucidation of the steps involved in tissue morphogenesis and growth, the questions also address repair/regeneration as well as dysfunctional regulation in connective tissue disorders. This focus also complements studies of abnormal growth, cell migration
and cell-matrix interactions in cancer biology and angiogenesis. We are using transgenic models provided by other investigators or created in my laboratory. We
then integrate biochemical, immunochemical, molecular, biomechanical and ultrastructural approaches in our analyses. In addition, my laboratory has a major interest in biological imaging. Our experience with transmission electron microscopy and our ultrastructural analyses are considered laboratory strengths.