Nuclear Functions of Actin and Myosins

Nuclear localization of myosin (green); nuclei are stained with DAPI for visualization (blue).

Students will utilize in vitro and in vivo transcription assays to analyze the function and regulation of nuclear actin and nuclear myosins.

Project description

Over the last several years the identification and functional characterization of the motor proteins actin and myosin in the nucleus has initiated a change in the view of nuclear processes. It is now well-accepted that actin as well as various myosins are engaged in RNA processing and transport, chromatin remodeling, and transcription by RNA polymerase I, II and III. Several research projects are available that will analyze the function and regulation of nuclear actin and nuclear myosins, such as analysis of transcription by RNA polymerase II. We use in vitro as well as in vivo transcription assays to understand how exactly actin and myosins are involved in this specific process. Other research projects are directed at understanding the regulation of nuclear actin and myosins during oxidative stress in cardiac diseases such as the ischemic heart, in cancer, as well as in neuronal diseases such as Alzheimer's.

Project outcome

The specific outcomes of this project will be identified by the faculty mentor at the beginning of your collaboration. 

Project details

Timing, eligibility and other details
Length of commitment The minimum commitment is 1 semester, however,students usually continue to work on their evolving project for several semester
Start time Anytime
In-person, remote, or hybrid?
Level of collaboration Individual student project
Benefits Academic Credit, Volunteer, Work Study
Who is eligible Prior experience in a laboratory setting is helpful but not necessary. We will train as required
Goldwater and the National Science Foundation

Students participating in this project might be interested in and eligible for the Goldwater Scholarship and the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. Connect with the Office of Fellowships and Scholarships to learn more.

Project mentor

Wilma Hofmann

Associate Professor

Physiology and Biophysics

Room 4132, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

Phone: (716) 829-3290


Start the project

  1. Email the project mentor using the contact information above to express your interest and get approval to work on the project. (Here are helpful tips on how to contact a project mentor.)
  2. After you receive approval from the mentor to start this project, click the button to start the digital badge. (Learn more about ELN's digital badge options.) 

Preparation activities

Once you begin the digital badge series, you will have access to all the necessary activities and instructions. Your mentor has indicated they would like you to also complete the specific preparation activities below. Please reference this when you get to Step 2 of the Preparation Phase. 


Physiology and Biophysics