Amy Nava

Research interests:

My long-term research goals are to identify and characterize voltage gated calcium channels (VGCC) and Ca2+/ion exchange antiporters (CAX) in MRSA to elucidate how calcium influx is induced by voltage depolarization in order to facilitate Ca2+ signaling. My research experience leading up to this has supported the possibility of calcium signal transduction pathways in bacteria which agrees with various studies that have linked calcium signaling to regulation of other bacterial physiological processes including virulence. Understanding the mechanism of calcium regulation of multidrug resistance mechanisms would be an important step towards mitigating antibiotic resistance which has become a global crisis. This would be actualized by learning to identify key proteins in regulation pathways as well as elucidate how calcium transporters control intracellular calcium concentrations to make signaling possible. Very little is known about the proteins involved in regulation and maintenance of intracellular calcium  ([Ca2+]i) homeostasis and signaling in prokaryotes. Although calcium specific transporters have not yet been identified in methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), several bacterial species utilize substrates such as H+, Na+ and K+ in exchange for calcium. For pathogens, [Ca2+]i homeostasis is crucial for regulation of virulence factors.

Favorite ice cream flavor: Ben & Jerry's vegan chocolate fudge brownie

Favorite movie: Wall-E

Hometown: las Cruces, New Mexico (USA)

Hobby: Gardening and Hiking

Favorite Wu-Tang member: 1st choice-'Ol Dirty Bastard 2nd choice- Masta Killa

Amy's Stanford Profile Page

Contact: arnava at stanford dot edu