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Research by Doug Swank featured in APSselect

Research by Doug Swank featured in APSselect

By Mary L. Martialay

June 12, 2019

A research article written by a team including Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Professor Doug Swank has been chosen for APSselect, a collection showcasing some of the best recently published physiological research. Swank, an expert in muscle protein and contraction, is a professor of biological sciences and member of the Rensselaer Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies.

The American Physiological Society chose the article, “The load-dependence of muscle's force-velocity curve is modulated by alternative myosin converter domains,” which was published in a May edition of the American Journal of Physiology – Cell Physiology.

Swank’s lab investigates how muscle is able to power an amazingly wide variety of locomotor tasks and modulate heart function. Research focuses in the lab include determining how variation between muscle fiber types -- like slow versus fast-contracting fibers -- is generated, the mechanisms behind muscle mechanical properties such as stretch activation, and muscle diseases such as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The lab takes an integrated approach, starting with muscle genes and moving up in scale to protein expression and function, muscle mechanics, and whole organism studies. 

The article, which Swank wrote with co-authors Christopher S. Newhard and Sam Walcott, can be found at DOI: 10.1152/ajpcell.00494.2018


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Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is America’s first technological research university. Rensselaer encompasses five schools, 32 research centers, more than 145 academic programs, and a dynamic community made up of more than 7,900 students and more than 100,000 living alumni. Rensselaer faculty and alumni include more than 145 National Academy members, six members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, six National Medal of Technology winners, five National Medal of Science winners, and a Nobel Prize winner in Physics. With nearly 200 years of experience advancing scientific and technological knowledge, Rensselaer remains focused on addressing global challenges with a spirit of ingenuity and collaboration.