Ankit Garg, MD, PhD
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Washington University in St. Louis (WU)
I am interested in better defining the molecular mechanism of striated muscle diseases which includes cardiac and skeletal myopathies. A key deficiency in myopathies is an alteration in the contractility of the myocyte. The fundamental contractile unit of the myocyte is the sarcomere: a highly conserved and ordered structure that generates force for locomotion. Mutations of proteins in the sarcomere are well known to cause disruption of function, but the mechanisms underlying these changes remain to be better defined. Furthermore, the spectrum of penetrance of dysfunction between skeletal and cardiac muscles for disruption of mutually shared proteins can be highly variable for which the mechanism is unknown. My work will focus on defining the underlying biochemical, biophysical, and transcriptional mechanisms of myopathies and apply these findings to create new drug classes to treat both inherited and acquired myopathies.