Regulation of cardiac and skeletal muscle contraction; Adaptations in these regulatory processes in response to development, training, aging or disease.
The research in the Diffee laboratory is focused on understanding the regulation of contraction in muscle cells. Regulation of the contractile force and speed is a complex process that involves the concerted effort of numerous cellular components. These regulatory processes are key in the modulation of contractile performance and are often subject to alteration by the muscle cell as it adapts during development, to changes in functional demand (such as with chronic exercise), or to aging or disease processes.
Experiments in the lab often center on measuring the contractile and functional properties of single skeletal muscle or cardiac muscle cells, since this preparation eliminates the variability inherent in multicellular preparations.