Biological Physics

Biophysicists at the MU Department of Physics & Astronomy strive to develop state-of-the-art experimental and computational techniques and implement new theories and methods to tackle biologically significant and therapeutically important problems. Using a unique ultrastable atomic force microscope (AFM) and an integrated fluorescence and magnetic tweezers system, molecular biophysicists manipulate single molecules to investigate protein and DNA dynamics and interactions. Applying photonics, nanoscience, and nanotechnology, optical and nanomedicine biophysicists develop novel nanomaterials, devices, and biomedical imaging systems for drug delivery and medical imaging for cancer therapy. By developing biophysical theories and physics and machine learning-based computational methods, theoretical and computational biophysicists predict protein and nucleic acid structures and dynamics, model lipid-protein, protein-protein, protein-RNA interactions and physical mechanisms in gene regulation and gene editing systems, and design protein and RNA-targeted therapeutic drugs. Our collective efforts are focused on clinical translation of research findings to benefit human patients for treating cancers and various diseases.

Biological Physics Faculty

Curators' Professor

Statistical thermodynamics and kinetics of RNA and protein folding.

Curators' Professor of Physics & Radiology

Nanoscience and nanotechnology in nanomedicine.

Professor

Single molecule biophysics, applications of atomic force microscopy.

Professor

Molecular dynamics simulations, non-equilibrium statistical mechanics in biomolecular systems

Assistant Professor

Computational and single molecule biophysics.

Professor

Nonlinear optics, optoelectronics, biomedical imaging.

Professor

Computational modeling of protein interactions with application to drug design.