Spotlight Scientist -
Michael Alan Freitas, PhD
Michael Freitas is a Professor in the Department of Cancer Biology and Genetics at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Michael Freitas is an expert in the field of mass spectrometry, bioinformatics and data science.
My primary research interest is the elucidation of the structure and function of the proteins associated with Photosystem II in higher plants and cyanobacteria. We are particularly interested in examining the interactions between the intrinsic components (CP47, CP43, D1, D2, cytochrome b559 and a number of other low molecular mass peptides) and the extrinsic components (33, 24, and 17kDa) of this membrane protein complex. My group is utilizing site-specific labeling, protein cross-linking and site-directed mutagenesis to investigate these associations. Recently, we have demonstrated that the three extrinsic proteins associated with Photosystem II are required for photoautotrophy and photosystem assembly and stability in Arabidopsis. We are also interested in the identification of novel genes which are required for photosystem assembly and optimal photoautotrophy in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis 6803.