B.S. Birzeit University, Ph.D The University of Lausanne
George Shubeita’s research is in the area of cell physics, where the synergy between physics and biology leads to concurrent advancement of our understanding of biological function and the physical principles governing it. The current focus of his lab is on understanding molecular motor function in the context of intracellular transport. Motor proteins are responsible for the long-distance shuttling of vesicles and organelles as well as pathogens like viruses along the cytoskeletal filaments inside the cell. Shubeita combines genetic, biochemical, and state-of-the-art biophysical tools to study how multiple similar and dissimilar molecular motors interact, how their transport properties are governed by the complex cellular physical environment as well as co-factors present in vivo, and how failure in motor regulation relates to disease. He pioneered the methodology to directly measure molecular motor forces at the single molecule level in their native environment within living cells. The interplay between this in vivo methodology and work in vitro makes it possible to address longstanding questions on motor function and regulation that are not accessible using other methods.