Our Faculty

Ronald S. Rock, PhD

Cells use an extensive toolkit of myosin motor proteins to traffic materials, anchor components, and control their shape. The focus of our group is to understand biological motion, specifically how motor proteins navigate the cytoskeleton and dynamically organize cells. We use a multifaceted approach, constructing advanced single-molecule fluorescence microscopes and optical tweezers to watch how myosins move in vitro and in whole cells. We also use structural biology tools to understand how myosin architecture and quaternary structure regulates motility.

Stanford University
Palo Alto, CA
Postdoc, Spudich Lab - Biochemistry
2004

Caltech
Pasadena, CA
Ph.D. - Chemistry
1998

University of Chicago
Chicago, IL
B.S. - Chemistry
1992

4-Hydroxyacetophenone modulates the actomyosin cytoskeleton to reduce metastasis.
Bryan DS, Stack M, Krysztofiak K, Cichon U, Thomas DG, Surcel A, Schiffhauer ES, Beckett MA, Khodarev NN, Xue L, Poli EC, Pearson AT, Posner MC, Robinson DN, Rock RS, Weichselbaum RR. 4-Hydroxyacetophenone modulates the actomyosin cytoskeleton to reduce metastasis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2020 09 08; 117(36):22423-22429.
PMID: 32848073

How Actin Tracks Affect Myosin Motors.
Santos A, Shauchuk Y, Cichon U, Vavra KC, Rock RS. How Actin Tracks Affect Myosin Motors. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2020; 1239:183-197.
PMID: 32451860

Snapshots of a molecular swivel in action.
Trejo CS, Rock RS, Stark WM, Boocock MR, Rice PA. Snapshots of a molecular swivel in action. Nucleic Acids Res. 2018 06 01; 46(10):5286-5296.
PMID: 29315406

Tail-Anchored Protein Insertion by a Single Get1/2 Heterodimer.
Zalisko BE, Chan C, Denic V, Rock RS, Keenan RJ. Tail-Anchored Protein Insertion by a Single Get1/2 Heterodimer. Cell Rep. 2017 Sep 05; 20(10):2287-2293.
PMID: 28877464

Investigations of human myosin VI targeting using optogenetically controlled cargo loading.
French AR, Sosnick TR, Rock RS. Investigations of human myosin VI targeting using optogenetically controlled cargo loading. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2017 02 28; 114(9):E1607-E1616.
PMID: 28193860

Myosin light chain kinase steady-state kinetics: comparison of smooth muscle myosin II and nonmuscle myosin IIB as substrates.
Alcala DB, Haldeman BD, Brizendine RK, Krenc AK, Baker JE, Rock RS, Cremo CR. Myosin light chain kinase steady-state kinetics: comparison of smooth muscle myosin II and nonmuscle myosin IIB as substrates. Cell Biochem Funct. 2016 Oct; 34(7):469-474.
PMID: 27528075

Competition between Coiled-Coil Structures and the Impact on Myosin-10 Bundle Selection.
Vavra KC, Xia Y, Rock RS. Competition between Coiled-Coil Structures and the Impact on Myosin-10 Bundle Selection. Biophys J. 2016 06 07; 110(11):2517-2527.
PMID: 27276269

Actin age orchestrates myosin-5 and myosin-6 run lengths.
Zimmermann D, Santos A, Kovar DR, Rock RS. Actin age orchestrates myosin-5 and myosin-6 run lengths. Curr Biol. 2015 Aug 03; 25(15):2057-62.
PMID: 26190073

Pharmacological activation of myosin II paralogs to correct cell mechanics defects.
Surcel A, Ng WP, West-Foyle H, Zhu Q, Ren Y, Avery LB, Krenc AK, Meyers DJ, Rock RS, Anders RA, Freel Meyers CL, Robinson DN. Pharmacological activation of myosin II paralogs to correct cell mechanics defects. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Feb 03; 112(5):1428-33.
PMID: 25605895

The development and application of a quantitative peptide microarray based approach to protein interaction domain specificity space.
Engelmann BW, Kim Y, Wang M, Peters B, Rock RS, Nash PD. The development and application of a quantitative peptide microarray based approach to protein interaction domain specificity space. Mol Cell Proteomics. 2014 Dec; 13(12):3647-62.
PMID: 25135669

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Burroughs Wellcome Career Award at the Scientific Interface
2002

Helen Hay Whitney Postdoctoral Fellow
1999