Molecular labeling technologies

Understanding the spatial organization and functional interaction of biomolecules in living systems is a central goal in biology. We invent and engineer genetically-encoded enzymes for chemical barcoding and functional mapping of molecular network with unprecedented spatiotemporal resolution. We take a multi-disciplinary approach of combining chemical synthesis, protein engineering, transcriptomics, proteomics, and machine learning to develop and deploy next-generation molecular labeling toolkits that will empower the discovery of novel molecules and their mechanisms of action in living cells.

Epithelial stem cell signaling and regulation

Epithelial stem cells play a key role in maintaining the integrity of barrier tissues, such the skin, lung, and intestine, by serving as the source of cell renewal. We apply our molecular labeling tools, along with conventional microscopy, single-cell analyses, lineage tracing, organoids, and mouse models to dissect: 1) how spatial organization of the transcriptome affects stem cell function and fate; 2) how composition of the stem cell niche evolves during homeostasis, injury, regeneration, aging, and tumorigenesis.