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Dr. Subramaniam's research focuses on visualizing and modeling cells and viruses at molecular resolution using 3D electron microscopy.
Emerging methods in 3D biological electron microscopy provide powerful tools and great promise to bridge a critical gap in imaging in the biomedical size spectrum. This comprises a size range of considerable interest that includes cellular protein machines, giant protein and nucleic acid assemblies, small subcellular organelles and bacteria. These objects are generally too large and/or too heterogeneous to be investigated by high resolution X-ray and NMR methods; yet the level of detail afforded by conventional light and electron microscopy is often not adequate to describe their structures at resolutions high enough to be useful in understanding the chemical basis of biological function. The long-term mission of Dr. Subramaniam's research program is to obtain an integrated molecular understanding of the molecular architecture of dynamic biological systems by combining novel technologies for 3D biological imaging with advanced methods for image segmentation and computational analysis. Topics of current interest are aimed at addressing fundamental problems related to bacterial chemotaxis, HIV/AIDS and cancer.